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Entries in h'mong (1)


Buy From Me

“Buy from me!” sang the swarming young Black H’mong girls in Sapa, Vietnam.

They swirled around him like dancers at the faire, like gnats around a flame.

He was on fire and they wanted to save him.

The Black H’mong wear a deep dark blue almost black indigo cloth. After it’s been repeatedly washed and dried in the sun it takes on a glistening silver metallic sheen.

They crowded around him. He was a stranger in town. A stranger goes on a journey. Two kinds of stories.

Girls carried orange and green and blue and yellow woven bags around their necks. Inside the bags they had postcards of the Red Dzao people, narrow embroidered colorful wrist bands and thin hand made wallets. The wallets had a zippered pocket inside for secret money.

“My story is to sell in the street,” said Mo, all of 10. She wore a dirty green t-shirt. Her face was smudged with dirt. Her off white broken plastic Vietnamese sandals had seen their better day.

They cost 15,0000 Dong in the market. He gave her a blue 20. “Go buy some new sandals.”

She said, “Really?”

He said, “Yes, really.”

He waited in the food market surrounded by new languages, clattering dishes, the smell of frying food and a mishmash of costumed humans.

The Black, White and Flower H’mong. Red Dzao. Tay.

Mo came back with her new white plastic sandals in a pink plastic bag. She squeezed between two slurping H’mong women and sat down.

“Are you hungry?” he said.

“Yes,” she said.

“Ok, let’s get some chicken noodle soup.”

“Ok,” she said. Delicious.


Mo & My