Friday Night, the stillness, the madness
Under the purplish sky 
Wear a pink blouse, come to a deserted garden
Fireflies might come but you should not expect it
Focus on cooking a good meal
Wash and dry all peaches
Every peach is a maze
Trim and thinly slice water lilies
Separating whites from greens
Then thinly slice tangerine
A tangerine is as tender as your heart
Mix it with chiseled snow
Cut a tomato into 1/2 inch dices
Longer than your penis you would say
Flank tomato dices with pretty Azaleas
Stir, stir, stir
Until fragmented, fragile and fragrant
Heat a drizzle of oil
Extracting from the dessert during the sunrise
Pour the trails of clouds sinking to the edge
Of the western hills
And the silence gathered from the frog pond
Wait for 1 minute
Or wait for the incense to burn, or roll the dice
Add a splash of rain from last night
When you were drenched, walked alone in the tunnel
The tunnel that keeps getting longer
Too long to peel a peach
Finally, drain everything
Like the world drains your brain
Season with morning dew and moonlight
The meal is ready
Enjoy it as if you made of air
And the night made of glass

Photo by Quinton Coetzee on Unsplash

Xiao Yan

Xiao Yan is a Chinese poet who grew up in a small town in southern China, where she began writing poetry at age sixteen. Known for her classical Chinese writing style, she moved to the US at age seventeen, where she began incorporating multicultural aspects into her work, reflecting on her life in both countries. She received her bachelor’s degree in East Asian Studies and History at UC Davis and is currently studying Bilingual & Bicultural Education at Columbia University. Xiao Yan has published a few influential poetry books in Chinese, including A Record of Chanting Dreams and Invisible Tel Aviv. Café after Dawn is her first poetry collection written in English.