Poem of the Week: Hoa Nguyen’s “Birthday Poem”

Birthday Poem

Illuminated behind a skin
a grey      the sky with fat
fast slants of snow

Fire Horse poet      This is a birthday
poem   squeaky underfoot
the snow and Jeannine’s cookies

I drive husbands and fathers
to early deaths    Push the knife
into the cake to cut it

Me the supposed bringer of ruin
(money)       Covered in fondant and
violet flowers

It’s my birthday    My eyes are older

Hoa Nguyen’s Violet Energy Ingots was published by Wave Books in 2016. Nguyen currently lives in Toronto, Ontario where she curates a reading series and teaches poetics privately and at Ryerson University. This poem was published with permission from the press. Hey, Montreal, Hoa will be reading at the Atwater Poetry Project April 12th.