I Know You

by Peter Schneider

I know your flower print nylon dress
as it clings tightly to your thighs
and your knees that shine when you sit,

your body concealed under the cloth apron
as you stand at your job cooking in the diner
next to the building supply depot in the old

river mill town. There is dirty foam on the rocks
below the falls. I see you bending over
in your bathroom under a harsh fluorescent light

to cut your toenails, the cotton q-tips displayed
in ecstatic chance on the green linoleum counter
and here are your daughter and young boy-child

jumping endlessly up and down on the beat-up
brown nubbly couch so much like 
your life as it multiplies and frays.

Against a brick backdrop, you turn to face
the collection of baseball caps
your absent husband keeps. 

Peter Schneider is a poet and psychotherapist who lives in Brooklyn, NY. and Rochester, Vt. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in AMP: The Journal of Digital Literature (Hofstra Univ.); The Buddhist Poetry Review; Mobius: The Journal of Social Change; The Shot-glass Journal; KAIROS; and in the broadside collection, A Midnight Snack. His MFA is from Columbia University and his Ph.D. is in clinical psychology from New York University.

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