By Lê Vĩnh Tài, translated by Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm like a silkworm in its cocoon you’re wrapped up in the worries you’re relentless you’re helpless without the vaccines we have still sadness the small consolation as you ascend like angels with not a scar except the salty saline would burn your eyes it rained then came the deaths the artist Lê Thánh Thư passed away his daughter message that it was sudden and quick Nguyễn Viện cried Trần Tiến Dũng cried Đỗ Trung Quân cried Thận Nhiên all the way in Vung Tau also cried Fat Nhân in Saigon also cried powerless we tore off the pages of the calendar good people never disappear they farewell us the way the Sun temporarily disappear in the rain helplessly we stare into our bowls of instant noodles we talk and we talk forgetting high in the sky an artist had just away fly with not enough time to remove his mask and breathe (October 2021)
Lê Vĩnh Tài, an acclaimed Vietnamese poet, born 1966 in Buon Ma Thuot, Daklak, Vietnam. The retired doctor is still a resident of the Western Highlands, an acclaimed businessman in Buon Ma Thuot.
Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm, the poet and translator, born 1971 in Phu Nhuan, Saigon, Vietnam. The pharmacist currently lives and works in Western Sydney, Australia.