Eric Odynocki is the 2nd place winner of Streetlight‘s 2022 Poetry Contest
glints like a boneyard, white plates peeking
over the rim like tusks or femurs with traces
of flesh or bolognese. This was not how
I imagined adulthood. Standing over a faucet
and scrubbing. An uncalled-for bicep exercise.
I swear the pots and dishes multiply when I don’t
look. Mental note: next home with dishwasher.
A must. Until then, each evening wanes into the drain.
Slosh, brillo, jenga on the rack. Sometimes, I listen
to a playlist, finesse the ring-around of my hand
and sponge with a one-two step or a spin, vacate
the present to vacation with the Go-Gos or wonder
with Whitney if she will ever, indeed, know. It’s better
than the tap’s whitenoise, the scream of glasses tumbling
beneath the soapy surface. I can forget the suds, how they
shimmer, balloon into crystalline planets large enough
to reflect the faces of all those gone now
who warned me never to grow up.
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