By Nicole Tiao
/ Poetry /
I don’t understand why the sun keeps dipping
below the horizon, spinning
the sky into pinks and oranges and reds I used to dream
here in Los Angeles
where the roses smell like summer in January
I want to smother my body in roses
to smell like the rose soft serve from Xinjiekou
that I savored on a crowded sidewalk surrounded
by honking cars & exhaling buses & a babble
I prayed to understand — oh,
that soft serve tasted like heaven,
& I’ve chased it ever since.
Why am I thinking about that soft serve?
You’re about to start chemo.
You insist you’re not dying.
I’m afraid you are.