Our last skirmish, a jerky sequence
of give-and-mistake over boney cod filets,
ends with my hot hands in dishwater,
a solitaire ring in the red soap dish
on the ledge, window open to a
spring wind chill shifting wisps
of pale hair and the purple blooms
of African violets in my mother’s white crock.
My wrinkled fingers pick off
bowed on withered stems.
Soapy water drains
through corroded pipes,
mumbling like iron wheels
on a creaking track
below strangled gurgles.
I scrub sink-scum
with a yellow sponge
caked with bubble bursts,
swipe sweat from my eyes,
dry my left hand,
a damp white dishrag
and leave the diamond behind.
Tricia Knoll is a Vermont poet who is thrilled that her fourth collection of poetry, the chapbook Checkered Mates, is coming out from Kelsay Books in April, 2021. Her poems appear widely in journals and anthologies. Website: triciaknoll.com
© 2021, Tricia Knoll