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For Ian's translations of Co May

Nguyen Duc Son

Tue Sy

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In the photo, Than Nhien is seated on the left. On the right is Ian Bui, the translator.

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For more Poetry




Than Nhien and Ian Bui Than Nhien

Translated by Ian Bui


Fetus

They pulled
from my soul and between
your thighs

a reptilian fetus
an unwinged angel
a feeble termite
a hideous, yellowed
stain on the clinic's wall
a diseased lifebud asphyxiating
an afternoon floating in a daze

I plant flowers and make poemsó

once I saw terrified young girls
trembling through that door
then at night dreamed of tiny angels
walking their first steps
and morphed larvae taking flight
after a rain

The walls have been repainted with a new color
I've sterilized these lines
like a doctor sterilizing his implementsó
jaded by the slamming of doors
that open to the chapel of conscience

Stupefied, dawn!