Not Here is a flight plan for escape and a map for navigating home; a queer Vietnamese American body in confrontation with whiteness, trauma, family, and nostalgia; and a big beating heart of a book. Nguyen’s poems ache with loneliness and desire and the giddy terrors of allowing yourself to hope for love, and revel in moments of connection achieved.
Praise for Hieu Minh Nguyen
[V]ery few could do what Nguyen has done.
— The New York Times
I’m always struck by Hieu’s balance of tenderness in his poems, the way that he holds a thin knife to both humor and trauma, turning one so easily into another.
— NBC News
Nguyen’s voice feels simultaneously young and ageless, uncertain and wise. His poems are pitched somewhere between page and stage, as if said aloud right into your ear.
About Hieu Minh Nguyen
Hieu Minh Nguyen is the author of This Way to the Sugar (Write Bloody Publishing, 2014) and Not Here (Coffee House Press, 2018). Winner of the Thom Gunn Award for Gay Poetry, both of his collections of poetry were also finalists for a Minnesota Book Award and a Lambda Literary Award. In 2019 Hieu was awarded the Wallace Stegner Fellowship from Stanford University. He is also 2018 Ruth Lily and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Fellow, 2018 McKnight Writing Fellow, a Kundiman Fellow, a 2017 National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellow, the recipient of the Minnesota Emerging Writers’ Grant, and an Artist Initiative Grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board. He is a poetry editor for Muzzle Magazine. His work has also appeared or is forthcoming in Poetry Magazine, the New York Times, Best American Poetry, the Academy of American Poets, BuzzFeed, and elsewhere. He lives in Oakland and is a graduate from the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College.