Lê Vĩnh Tài | past seeing to fear (125)

Lê Vĩnh Tài, the Vietnamese poet and translator, born 1966 in Buon Ma Thuot, Daklak, Vietnam. The retired doctor is still a resident of the Western Highlands, an acclaimed businessman in Buon Ma Thuot.

Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm, the poet and translator, born 1971 in Phu Nhuan, Saigon, Vietnam. The pharmacist currently lives and works in Western Sydney, Australia.

By Lê Vĩnh Tài, translated by Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm


I walk around there

around I walk you


fear of seeing past

past seeing to fear


the cracks on walls

walls the cracks are on


your fear of what

fear what is yours


end with us all

with us all end

could possibly find

within the cracks

when will the door open

open door will when


the gourd is shattered

the one crawling out

out crawling the one

blood by the day cold

turn into the people


tôi đi vòng quanh

vòng tôi đi bạn


sợ phải nhìn qua

qua nhìn phải sợ


vết nứt trên tường

tường trên vết nứt


bạn sợ những gì

sợ gì những bạn


cuối cùng chúng ta

cùng ta chúng cuối

có thể tìm thấy

từ trong vết nứt

khi nào cửa mở

cửa mở khi nào


quả bầu bị vỡ

những kẻ chui ra

chui ra những kẻ

máu ngày càng lạnh

hóa thành nhân dân



By Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm

There's magic in translating a body of work from one language to another.

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