My Other Father

I sit at my father’s bedside listening to his breathing. The rhythmic gasps of the ventilator disrupt the stillness of his coma. A monitor glowing lime green displays his blood pressure, screaming when the numbers drop below safe levels. His pulse flashes blip, blip, blip across the screen. Wires of blue, white, and yellow disappear under the edge of his hospital gown. My father has a hole in his neck. I can’t stop looking at it. A bandaged incision runs the length of his chest. A nurse tells me the surgeon sawed through my father’s breastbone to reach his...

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