HIEU MINH NGUYEN
It's not bad luck to name your goldfish
after the goldfish that has already died,
right? It seems impossible, on days like this,
to walk to work and not daydream
of ways to make eye-contact
with people wearing sunglasses.
It usually involves tripping or love.
My mother never told me the no glove rule,
just hung photographs of dead relatives
in the living room and photos of herself
in my bedroom. One day, if I'm lucky
enough to outlive my mother, I will pick the photo
of her with the perm––she fears this the most––
that, and having a son ruined by want,
by the endless limbs of other sons.
My mother never told me about the first boy
I was named after––just said he died
in a desert, just said he lost his way.
She flushed my old body down the toilet,
then took my photo off the wall.
188 The Paris-American
Next week's poet:
Hieu Minh Nguyen is the author of This Way to the Sugar (Write Bloody Press, 2014). Hieu is a Kundiman fellow, a recipient of the Minnesota Emerging Writers’ Grant from The Loft Literary Center, and recently appeared in Poets & Writers 2014 Debut Poets feature. His work has also appeared or is forthcoming in publications such as The Journal, PANK, Anti, Muzzle, Vinyl, Indiana Review, and other journals. He also works at a haberdashery.