In a windowless room,
our shirts pushed up
over the elbows,
in order to touch the bottom
without getting wet.
Feeling in the muck,
through the foreign food bodies,
for the soft stick of forks
and the smooth underbelly of spoons.
The mist from the sprayer slicks
every surface to a dangerous sheen.
The sound of food being scraped from
plates–like our unsaid thoughts,
half-formed in the false light,
The yawning of the dishwasher,
like a mouth opening and swallowing–
cycles of dirty then clean.
The door separates us from the eaters,
the consumers from the consumed,
the solar from the fluorescent.
But still at the end of each work-day,
when we walk out of the artificial glow
into the glare of the noonday sun,
it comes sharp and unexpected,
like finding a knife in dishwater.