By Seija Rankin
July 20, 2021 at 12:00 PM EDT
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Ocean Vuong
Ocean Vuong
| Credit: Tom Hines

New work from Ocean Vuong is coming next year, and it offers plenty for fans of On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous. The poet (whose debut novel is currently being adapted into an A24 film) will release his next collection, Time Is a Mother, on April 5, 2022 (published by Penguin Press), with the U.K. edition coming from Jonathan Cape on April 7. An intimate searching for meaning after his mother's death, Vuong's poems will explore, according to his publisher, "personal loss, the meaning of family, and the cost of being the product of an American war in America."

EW is also exclusively revealing the first look at the collection's cover, designed by Darren Haggar, VP, Director of Art for Penguin Press.

Time is a Mother
Credit: Penguin

"Every time I finish a book, I am filled with regrets," Vuong tells EW of his upcoming publication. "It doesn't mean that I'm not proud of what I've written — however fleeting pride might be — but only that I wish it could be more, that it could enact the mind's myriad changes in real-time. But a book is, in a way, the photograph of a spirit animated by the imagination and rendered in language. This means that by the time a manuscript is handed in, I would barely know who I am or what I have become since I first wrote it. 

"But this time, I feel absurdly happy, content, utterly empty and full all at once. For whatever strange and ungodly reason, I don't doubt this book's place in the world the same way I have doubted my own selfhood in it. Whether this is by luck or error or even by silly, regrettable naiveté, these words have caught up to me. And it feels right even as it sounds, somehow, wrong."

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