Chen-ou Liu's Translation Project: First English-Chinese Haiku and Tanka Blog

Friday, September 13, 2013

Other 9/11s, A Haiku Sequence

for Susan Sontag, author of Regarding the Pain of Others, who claimed that: The truth is always something that is told, not something that is known. If there were no speaking or writing, there would be no truth about anything. There would only be what is.

first September Eleventh
in the sky and on Chilean streets
blood, fire and smoke

stardust ...
spiraling numbers etched
into the cenotaph

a veiled woman
touches the names
September Eleventh

Note: Today marks the 40th anniversary of the U.S.-backed military coup in Chile that ousted democratically-elected Salvador Allende in 1973 and led to a 17-year repressive dictatorship led by General Augusto Pinochet. For more information, see Democracy Now! in Depth: 1973 Chilean Coup
September 12th Headline News from Democracy Now!
As the United States marked the 12th anniversary of the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, Chile commemorated what is known as the first 9/11 — the September 11, 1973 — the U.S.-backed coup that overthrew President Salvador Allende. In a ceremony at the presidential palace where her father was killed, Allende’s daughter, Chilean Senator Isabel Allende, said "truth and justice" is the only path to healing from the coup’s lingering damage.
Isabel Allende: "Only truth and justice will allow us to come back together as a country. And the ethical values and the values that never again break the democracy, never again have a coup, never to break constitutional order again, never again to hunt someone down because of their beliefs, never again torture or state terrorism."