Eversky.org A Dose of Asian Pop Culture & Entertainment

14Jul/100

Khanh Ly – Ngu Di Con

Composer: Trinh Cong Son
English Title: Sleep, My Child
Translated By: Gigi

Oh, please sleep. Sleep, my sweet child.
Mother's own child, with your skin of gold.
I'm soothing you to sleep, soothing your bullet wound dyed crimson.
For twenty years, a group of children became soldiers.
They left, but never returned, so did my golden-skinned child.
Sleep, my child.

I have sung a lullaby for you once, now twice already.
Oh, this body that was so small and frail long ago.
I carried you in my womb; I held you in my arms.
Oh, why must you sleep at the age of twenty?

Oh, please sleep. Sleep, my sweet child.
Mother's very own child emerged into this world,
On your lips echoed a sound of grief and pain.
For twenty years, that group of children matured.
Entering the battlefield, my golden-skinned child of antiquity.
Sleep, my child.

I have sung a lullaby for you once, now you lay into dust.
Oh, which injury was it that carved deeply into your warm skin?
Mother's own flesh and blood, that I have reared from dusk to dawn
Oh, why must you sleep at the age of twenty?

Oh, my child sleeps at the age of twenty.
Oh, why must you sleep at the age of twenty?
Oh, my child sleeps at the age of twenty.

Translator's Notes: At the beginning of the video, Khanh Ly discussed about the Viet Nam war. One particular comment caught my interest so I've decided to translate it to English:

"People can easily forget the feeling of happiness. However, when it comes to the feeling of sorrow and sadness, once it becomes a wound, even if it heals, it will leave a scar on the skin and in the hearts of the Vietnamese people."
— Khanh Ly

24Feb/102

Khanh Ly – Nhu Canh Vac Bay

Composer: Trinh Cong Son
English Title: Like the Wings of a Flying Crane
Translated By: Gigi

Is the sun as crimson as your lips?
Is the rain as sorrowful as your eyes?
Your hair of tiny strands
Falling upon this world to form ripples

The wind will rejoice at your hair swaying
Causing the soft clouds to rest upon your shoulders
Your shoulders so thin and slender
Like the wings of a crane flying towards the distance

Is the sun still jealous of your lips?
Is the rain still sad within your crystal eyes?
Ever since I accompanied you home
I knew we would be apart forever

The spring greets each of your passing steps
Leaves serenade from your fragrant hands
Leaves wither because they're waiting
Just like life is forever gloomy

Is the day joyful where you're returning to?
Is the sky blue where you're returning to?
I listen to the sound of a thousand tears
Falling, transforming into a luminous lake.

Translator's Note: At the beginning of the video, Khanh Ly discussed about her meeting with Trinh Cong Son in 1967 where he showed her the song "Nhu Canh Vac Bay." He told her of a beautiful memory he had while he was in Da Lat. He and another young lady, her identity unknown, were taking a walk in the forest and stopped by a small spring. He rested by a tree and he watched her walk beside the spring. He continued to watch her as the golden sunlight shone on her slender hair and across her entire body. The wind was blowing causing her hair and her dress to flutter aimlessly in the wind. He cherished that beautiful memory and thus, wrote the song "Nhu Canh Vac Bay."

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