from Virginia at SAFSF day before tgiving:
When I was starting high school my father and mother sponsored several families of Vietnamese refugees who came to our town on the Texas Coast. The first time I ate a Japanese persimmon was when I visited the first family to arrive, for the first time. They had bought a tiny house not far from the petrochemical plants that ringed our town with money that my dad’s church donated. They were extremely proud of the house. The grandmother, who did not speak English, wanted me to know that they bought the house because of the Japanese persimmon tree in the front yard. They would be able to have fresh persimmons, just like in Vietnam. Most of my visit was spent sitting on the couch between the mother and the grandmother, looking at the pictures from Saigon. Each one had to be described – this photo album was one of the very few possessions they had brought with them when they left Vietnam. When I got up to go, the grandmother rushed out with me and picked a persimmon. I ate it after I got home: a gorgeous golden sun of fruit, almost too sweet.
Sharp skin tinged with nostalgia and an ocean of loss.