SPECIAL ISSUE: CONNECTING GENERATIONS
franco F. Arcebal
Dear Veronica, my great-granddaughter:
You once asked me to tell you about the war, the experiences I had which you have not heard yet about. You are only nine years old.
This is about my second life—I was sentenced by decapitation when I was captured as a spy by the Japanese Imperialist Army. They tortured me—by baseball bat, water, electric shocks. If I did not escape, I would not be your lolo. I would not be here for you to ask me about the war.
I was sentenced in the monkey house, the place where guerrillas were captured and sentenced for execution.
We were six in the monkey house.
I was the youngest. 20. What they considered fresh and young and robust, something that needed to be broken.
I was the most severely tortured. My body still remembers. Sometimes I want to forget. But this body, it remembers.