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POETRY/THƠ

Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm | The trauma of my childhood comes uninvited (248)

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

The trauma of my childhood comes uninvited, crept up through the unwelcomed tears.
Facing death is more doable than the darkness of my past.
I forget I am as much Vietnamese as I am Australian.
The therapist within me is just as much a victim of war and oppression. I am only strong because of my family.
I have allowed myself the choice to cry, I have allowed myself the acknowledgement of my sad pathetic pitiful poetic existence.
I have tried to delete the undeletable memories. But, I am not me without it.
I want to leave, leave this place full of roses pungent with the scent of sweat.
But I love, and I love still.

By Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm

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

2 replies on “Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm | The trauma of my childhood comes uninvited (248)”

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