Bringin’ the Pain

just drive, will you?

Now I’ve been crying lately
Thinkin’ about the world as it is
Why must we go on hating?
Why can’t we live in bliss?

Cat Stevens/Yusuf Islam, “Peace Train”, 1971

Before I get into the real purpose of this post, I want to recommend an absolutely remarkable episode of television. If you’re able to watch the medical drama New Amsterdam (my favorite show, BTW) on demand, catch the episode that just aired this week, titled, “Maybe Tomorrow.” (Season 5, Episode 7) It is unforgettable.

I’ve been really struggling with writing this one, y’all.

There’s been a cloud of self-doubt hanging over me about this blog. I’ve been asking myself, should I keep writing? Do I have anything of value left to say? (Assuming I ever did.) Will anybody read it? Will it make a bit of difference in the whole scheme of things?

And then I recall a comment I…

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Election noise making


Nov 3

The following is a letter I forwarded to my newspaper for publishing. It is doubtful they will as I had something published last month, but please feel free to adapt and use.

It is disappointing to this independent and former Republican voter that too many Republican candidates feel obligated to pretend the former president’s bogus and universally unproven election fraud is not a falsehood. It also disappoints me some are beating a resulting drumbeat that the upcoming election might be problematic to sow doubt.

From where I sit, I see a misuse of Trump’s Big Lie to perpetuate a fraud on the American people by restricting voting by certain manipulators who are making a fuss. I encourage all eligible Americans to vote and ignore the noise from these manipulators. We should make it easier for people to vote, not harder in my view.

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Tặng người tự do

Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm

“Tưởng rằng đã quên…” những ký ức ném vào thùng rác khi tôi còn ngơ ngác nuôi những gì gọi là hạnh phúc (thật sự). Sự ác tụ trong những anh hùng tù giữa bốn bức tường thánh thiện cao hơn tầm mắt người. Còn tôi, đần độn mãi. Tôi sợ. Tôi còn sợ? Tại sao tôi sợ?

Lục ra từ đống rác một khúc nhớ, gói lại trong bàn tay, nhe nhẹ thắt gọn bằng tơ phút. Tôi tặng người tự do.

“Thought, it has been forgotten…” the memories thrown out with the garbage when I was still ignorant enough to nurture all that is called (real) happiness. Cruelty resides in heroes imprisoned amidst four walls of virtue beyond the human eye. As for me, stupid forever. I’ve been afraid. I’m still afraid? Why am I still afraid?

Fishing out from the trash a piece of recall, wrapping…

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Nha Trang

Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm

The silence is the soothing suspended time in a pocket which carries me. I’m a cocktail of sadness and joy, I am nothing and more. The car horns beep down below far, calling home. A thousand people, a hundred thousand souls drove towards redemption. Crooked smiles, missing teeth, dull silver oily matted hair against long limbs, firm skin of teenagers. They are tired, they are all tired in the dying light. Grey, more grey seeping between stark white hot dusty concrete blocks settling in the shadows, deep in the dreaming of dawn. 

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.

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