You enter a diner far from home,
in a state or neighborhood you’ve never visited before –
and you know the place:
it comes straight from the catalog of diners
so you’re sure you’ve been here –
the brass chandeliers and the Early American formica;
the railings and tables;
you know where the restrooms are and where the cashier sits.
When you pay at the familiar counter with its toothpicks and mints
and push open the customary door,
what country will you be in? what season? what year will it be?
and who will you be, and why?