A POEM BY HOA NGUYEN

Born in the Mekong Delta, Hoa Nguyen was raised and educated in the United States and has lived in Canada since 2011. She is the author of several books of poetry including As Long As Trees Last, Red Juice: Poems 1998-2008, and Violet Energy Ingots, which was nominated for a 2017 Griffin Poetry Prize. An experienced and popular teacher of poetics, Hoa teaches for Miami University’s low residency MFA program, as co-chair of writing in the Milton Avery School for Fine Arts at Bard College, as associated faculty for University of Guelph, and as a popular poetics workshop leader in cyberspace and Toronto. Hoa’s anticipated book, A Thousand Times You Lose Your Treasure, directs poetry toward history, hauntings, and diasporic experiences and includes biographical verse of her mother, who once rode stunt motorcycles in an all-woman Vietnamese circus troupe. A Thousand Times You Lose Your Treasure will be published in April 2021 by Wave books.




REVENGE POEM Spoiler alert: she drowns and turns into a bird I turn into my mother with my cruel quip and absent father nest 7, 11, or 14 days The sea loves me as I calm her her and her withered left side an opioid song she sings taking C for a very large cookie and I truly am the horrible-ist wanting the oracle to tell me first to expect the drowning sea Come lap lap lap back lap another way back sags skull sag faced Why build the nest on the sea when your name means scree serene know why the ease time These are my radiant fur scars my fur scarf and trinket necklace with the long brass (tarnished) chain Chem-sprayed burn scar “Strawberries,” he said



Copyright © Hoa Nguyen. Used with permission of the author.