Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm | The owner of my dignity (208)

I was born 1971, Phu Nhuan, Saigon, Vietnam. My family and I were a part of the first exodus of boat people after the Vietnam war. In March 1981, we settled in Sydney, Australia. I graduated with a bachelor of Pharmacy at the University of Sydney. I have been translating Vietnamese literature for the past five years in my search to better understand my mother’s language and culture. My translations have been shared through blogging over the past year. I am still a registered pharmacist practicing in Western Sydney. I hope to continue translating, and continue to share Vietnamese art and literature, beyond borders on SONGNGUTAITRAM.
(July 2021)

By Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm

How could you? 

How could you begrudge me 

my ignorance?

I am not of your world

(I care not for it)


You laugh at how little I know

The eyes of a bewildering child

My view of your world

Mine alone


My willingness to be alone


In the world of Men

How small I am then

Small small small


I am not the person you see

How then possibly do you see me


The owner of my dignity

The mother of my children

I am me

(No one’s property)


(September 2021)

By Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm

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

10 replies on “Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm | The owner of my dignity (208)”

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