Some strenuous days I
wish to be standing
by the sharp edge of
the tallest, hardest,
most harrowing of
cliffs, with myriads
of silenced conifers,
thousands of muffled
trilobites and hundreds
of stegosaur vertebrae
encaged in the purest
chalk, whereon I would
listen to the gnashing
teeth of seas of beasts
tricked offshore by our
cunning Buddha, who,
based on his rambles,
is never reaching his
hand out to save me,
not if I leap off this
balcony, fast as a love,
into the whale-dark sea,
wishing I were Sơn Tinh to raise
   the tender earth to grab me in the fall.


Nguyen Binh is a writer from Hanoi, Vietnam. Their poetry has appeared in Puerto del Sol, The Common, and Euphony, and their verse translation of The Tale of Kiều has been slated for publication in 2025. Currently, Binh is a PhD student in astronomy at the University of Washington.

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