We can’t say anything

We can’t say anything need the numbers need
            the blue paper that represents green
      paper that represents the field of poplars bi-monthly
                  to buy things DVDs DVRs RVs numbers

calculators in our dreams IRAs press down on our
            401K roofs the click click click of numbers
      in our dreams not a bird pecking for bird seeds
                  but pecking for 401Ks even the birds

can’t remember when the sky wasn’t stippled green
            even my father who can’t remember much
      remembers there are passwords but he can’t
                  remember his passwords can’t get past

his words can’t figure out what the pass is for can’t
            access his accounts can’t remember
      ass-kissing for his large accounts can’t account
                  for himself can no longer count

Victoria Chang’s third book of poems, The Boss, was published by McSweeney’s in 2013 as part of the McSweeney’s Poetry Series. She is also the author of Salvinia Molesta and Circle, which won the Crab Orchard Review Open Competition Award and the editor of an anthology, Asian American Poetry: The Next Generation. Her poems have appeared in Kenyon Review, American Poetry Review, POETRY, Believer, New England Review, VQR, The Nation, New Republic, The Washington PostBest American Poetry, and elsewhere. She lives in Southern California with her family and her weiner dog, Mustard, and works in business.
*Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.
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