poetry · Recent

I’m a doctor, now

I’m a doctor, now, you know.
I haven’t yet grown weary
of saying those words.
I grin and giggle when
the syllables slip
from tongue to my ears.

“Hi, Dr. Alger,” a friend will say
and I duck my head and blush
as if I’m thirteen and the boy I liked
said hi to me.

I’m a doctor now, you know.
I can say it after seven long years,
and people will be impressed.
It’s supposed to mean I’m smart,
it’s some major feat of intellect.

“I really have my PhD, in English,”
I say, when I forget the name of that guy
who wrote that thing about the stuff
and became famous for it.
I swear, I’m smart, I plead, when I put
my name on the wrong list or fill out
paperwork the wrong way
and lose words in the middle of a sentence.

I swear, I am a doctor now.
My brain just needs a little vacation
to recover from the pummeling
of the last seven years.

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