of Hanoi” by Nguyen Thi Vinh
Flash of lightning
“lush green sea”
Meadow – boys playing there at
“Stainless blue sky” – no war
old men “strolling to the
“village graybeards” -- wisdom
Note: The stanza describing the
girls and boys emphasizes
the vitality of youth.
“jubilant voices of children” –
learning the alphabet
Night -- chilling and cold
“Burn the future”
“way back sliced”
old women feeling “twilight
speaker’s memories of Hanoi are vivid and full of sensory
these images the speaker compares the Hanoi that he knows in the
present to that which he knew in the past.
present images focus on cold, stormy Hanoi. Through these
images, the speaker shows that a “frontier of hatred” now splits
Vietnam into two parts. The “frontier of hatred” is the line
dividing North from South Vietnam. Just as the speaker cannot
merge his past and present, he cannot merge the two parts of his
contrasting his past and present, the speaker deals with the
destruction of war. He shows that political divisions can
destroy friendships or families.
imagery reinforces this message, for the reader clearly views
the differences between the war-torn Hanoi of the present and
the placid Hanoi of the past.