My Father Says

My father says the wrong things I say the wrong things
my father thinks he is 42 not 69 my father
was born in 1942 my father thinks his address
is 1942 my father sits in a hospital
he thinks the year is 1942 that I am 1942 years old that his
knee is 1942 he thinks his name is 1942
he says he is in the hospital because of weight or maybe
he means weight or lean maybe he means
he leaned on the toilet he was fixing and fell down
he doesn't know where his nose is but he
knows 1942 when I was 19 I wanted to be a doctor
in a few years I will be 42 and I will
be afraid of doctors I can no longer think of the right
words to say my words come out
of my mouth twisted turned to spirals like a dancer
wrapping her leg around a pole
on some days the boss takes our 1942 and turns it
into 2491 on other days she turns it into
1429 and on the worst days she smiles at us
and her smile looks like a 9 turned
on its side with a cat's tongue sticking out when asked
to close his eyes my father points
to the white stack of papers when asked if his name
is Adam he points to the paper as if
to say ask the papers don't ask me he no longer knows
that a Chinese man from Taiwan can't
possibly be named Adam or Bill or Bob or John
or Gus maybe now he thinks
a Chinese man from Taiwan can be a CEO can be
a boss in America maybe now
he thinks his name is Adam maybe that
is why he named me Victoria

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