Who should I be?

A poem in Vietnamese by Lê Vĩnh Tài
Translator: Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm
Art: Trần Băng Khuê

Who are you

with your eyes cracking open suddenly

causing every single colour

to bleed?

 

Who are you to instigate

the execution of all colours

as soon as your nail polish dries up

 

Who are you actually?

What resides in your heart?

What had turned us into strangers?

In that case, who should I be?

May 2021

 

bạn là ai

khi hai mắt của bạn bỗng dưng bị vỡ

làm các màu sắc đều bắt đầu

chảy máu?

 

bạn là ai

khi sơn móng tay của bạn đã khô

làm sắc màu đã chết

 

bạn là ai?

trong trái tim bạn

để chúng ta trở thành người dưng?

rồi tôi sẽ là ai?

 


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

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

By Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm

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

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