UNMASKING HER SILENCE | poetry film


[viola] [silent mouthing, separate from audio narration] Making this interview,
I felt that I needed some control. There were so many questions
I wanted to ask you, but I did not know how to start. Should I look at you directly? Should we be more spontaneous
or creative with this? As women I think we are afraid
to talk to each other about war. My mother is Vietnamese.
Let me start there. She hates that I am a poet,
making things that do not make money. The refugee’s suffering only has value if
white people want to make her feel better. That is how my mother survived. What do white people get out of
watching women of color in pain? [viola] Too many Asian American women
are committing suicide. Do you know why? I write about silence. I write about the tongue, forked and invisible. I write about race. I write because I have no choice. English locks me in this cage,
and sometimes I resent white feminists for speaking about liberation on their terms. I want to decolonize my voice,
but I have nowhere to go. There is so much anger inside. There is so much anger. I am afraid of what may happen to me
if that anger goes away. How can we even look at each other? Making this interview, I felt
that I needed some control. [viola]

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