Dionne Brand

Verso 18.3

Why did you visit these sites of terror? I went to visit the world. I went to visit the years of solidarity with the world I was in solidarity with. I had read thousands of newspapers. I had followed the arguments, I had chosen sides. I had lived through, like someone on the other side of a telephone line, all the events, all the events had shaped me though they had not happened to me in the same way as they happened to the speaker on the other end of the telephone. I therefore visited to say to the air and the bodies, to the electrical wires—Here I am, I was on the other end of the telephone during all those years. I expected to find exhaustion, since how we live here is to use up those bodies there, give them a constant pounding and reworking and very often kill them. Instead I saw with relief, one million motorcycles in Ho Chi Minh City with two million young people riding them. That is when I sent the postcard to myself.