Not Here (Paperback)

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Not Here By Hieu Minh Nguyen Cover Image
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Staff Reviews

I have a tendency not to trust poets that came up on the performance scene, not because that art form doesn't have value--it does--but because too often a strong performer can hide the weakness in the writing. Nguyen's writing very much stands up on its own, and it doesn't fall prey to any of performance poetry's bad habits. Nguyen's poems cover themes of gender, sexuality, mental illness, grief, and complicated mothers. Some favorites of mine are "Changeling" (pg. 55), "Reunion" (pg. 66), and "Notes on Staying" (pg. 70), which ends with the stunning line, "& since there was no key, I guess I'll swallow the door." 

— From Rachel's Picks


Being queer and Asian American; families we are born into and ones we chose; nostalgia, trauma and history--all dissected fearlessly.

About the Author

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.

Product Details
ISBN: 9781566895095
ISBN-10: 156689509X
Publisher: Coffee House Press
Publication Date: April 10th, 2018
Pages: 120
Language: English