I am a pilgrim soul, who fled across the waters,

From ancient land that took its toll, upon its sons and daughters.

I am a child of war, there before my eyes could see,

Brought forth from a distant shore, by those yearning to breathe free.

A stranger in a new land, I am a girl of twelve years old,

Hopeful still of heart and hand, in a promised land of gold.

Now, I am a woman grown, still I am a refugee,

Seeking for a place to call my own, where I will be truly free.

I am a pilgrim soul, and yet if my heart should roam,

Homeward bound my heart extols, and my music is my home. 

 

Anna Reynolds was born in a country at war with itself.  A civil war with powerful patrons - the world's super powers - that turned her birthplace - Vietnam - into a strategic battleground for global advantage.  It became an unwanted war in the United States, an abandoned cause.  In 1975, America withdrew from Saigon, and Anna's soldier-father took his family to the countryside where it was safer, where they could survive - until they could escape to a new life and to freedom.  

On a small farm, in a village, they started their new life with pick and shovel, but soon the Communist Army was conscripting boys at gunpoint for its war in Cambodia, and her brothers were endangered.  Anna's father secretly plotted the family's escape - one-by-one, on boats set adrift on the ocean in hope of rescue.

By 12-years-old, Anna had seen three failed escape attempts - her father shot at by Communists tipped off to the escape plan...saved by her father from drowning in pitch black waters when the boat, overloaded by an unscrupulous profiteer, capsized.  Finally, on a fourth attempt, on an overcrowded fishing boat, adrift at sea for three days, a Malaysian freighter rescued the wayfarers.  After more than a year in refugee camps on Malaysian islands, she reunited with her brother who was living with sponsors in Utah.

A 14-year-old girl in a strange land of hope and promise, her early memories are hard to hold.  Learning a new language, attending school for the first time in years, going to the theater to watch Chinese kung fu movies on Tuesday dollar-days and the roller rink on Wednesday dollar-days.  Two years later, after being hijacked by pirates and diverted to a refugee camp in Thailand, her parents and sisters joined Anna and her brothers in the United States. In 1992, Anna adopted her new homeland and became a U.S. citizen.

It's been a road traveled by many and by none other.  Through childhood, marriage and motherhood Anna has returned time and again to her place of refuge - her music.  Through musical training, and trial and error - and lessons learned through hard experience - Anna creates compositions that defy easy characterization.  They will entice you while they challenge you intellectually.  

Anna also aspires to be a photographer and a writer.  She believes in the whole of human experience. The heart, the hand and the head.  Our emotional existence is bound to our sensual experiences that we interpret through our mind's eye.  Photography forces her to look on the world with a unique perspective. Writing forces her to explore the meaning of what she sees.  The purpose of art is to cause a visceral reaction...to make us laugh, to make us cry, to make us angry, to make us smile.  But, art, when it is done correctly, not only touches our heart, it wakes up our brain.  After all, we are, by our nature, creative and artistic.  She hopes that she can give you a glimpse of the world she see through her pictures and her words, as well as her music.

Welcome to the experience of Anna Reynolds' Melodies.

 

Thank you for visiting Anna Reynolds Melodies