The Doctor, Part 32

My friend loves me:
when he finds out
I’m sick
he offers me everything,
he
baitsandswitches
saying let’s have dinner,
brother,
with the others
and
like a good, crazy host
instead
lays out
cocaine
and
throws
hookers who try to
poke me
like my doctors,

the last two things I want
(I said yes
and
I said no,
don’t touch that
but you can rub my neck),

when I am done
telling everyone
high
how high
I love my wife,
high love,
more than ever,
my friend
rolls around with the girls,
sex trafficking
and we go to dinner in Chinatown
where the restaurant
is black and red and
reminds me of the club in Scarface,
The Babylon,
the coke makes me cold,
superaware
all I can smell
is gasoline as strong as the smell of iron
in blood
from the cocaine
process
and a little bit of perfume
is a girl
who told me and I didn’t believe her before I was done asking
her name
is Valery Nicole,
my stomach
trying to make the dumplings
into something good.