• Vol. 02
  • Chapter 11


My dad was a war hero.
Grandma told me his story every day lest I forgot,
caressing an already faded picture of him
standing straight-faced with a sword
sheathed on his right side.

Whenever her skinny thumb rubbed on father’s
face, she would make an expression as if she were holding
back an uncontrollable
laughter. I would guess
she must be really proud of him.

Your dad was such a brave man,
they said his life saved another ten more.

She prayed to the spirit
of the mountains,
of the heaven,
of the dead,
to the benevolent golden Indian prince
sitting with an inexplicable smile on the wooden altar.

She prayed for his soul and
for his rest and
his safe passage to the afterworld.

But I prayed that
if I’m good enough one day
I will run out to the river banks to meet a man
whose face I’ve only seen in
a rubbed-out photograph.