“The merchants stepped into the modern era still carrying the weight of the yoke on their shoulders.”
That’s a line from the book Ru by Kim Thuy. I just finished reading her poetic and haunting novel about life in Vietnam and a family much like her own that immigrates to Canada. The book was a beautiful reminder of my own visit to Vietnam. Kim Thuy’s non-sequential narrative moves from one scene to another each describing a different time or event in her protagonist An Tinh’s life. Certain sentences in Ru seemed almost to have been written as captions for some of the photos I took in Vietnam.
“The women let the sadness grow in the chamber of their hearts. They were so weighed down by all their grief they couldn’t pull themselves up……bowed under the weight of their sorrow.”