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Here you will find the writings of the poet Theodore Waterfield

Hands

My hands are at rest.
The deep wide tributaries
of their veins are swamped.
Not as severe as when
they are living the life of hands,
reaching, pulling,
touching delicately the moist edge
of an eye,
the smooth, briskness of paper.

I found my grandmother’s hands extraordinary.
With huge, blue veins like bridling,
like cords of damp silk.
She was old in her hands,
where she did all the charity
of her living,
combing the hair of grandchildren,
cooking porridge,
crocheting small stars on white napkins.

Now my hands reflect that complexion
of planetary age,
yet my face is not fissured,
but peacefully smooth,
uniform as ironed cloth.
Only my hands show wear,
the damage of life,
and hold the intention of my soul
in their fingers.

Ashamed, I shield them from clerks
by exposing only my palms for change,
by placing them behind me when speaking.
Yet they are the gifted part of me.
A garden with beautiful memories
and enormous poems,
writing themselves in labor,
in love, in prayer.

I love hands.
I reach for hands,
young and old,
worn or unused.
They tell the world a story,
and give themselves away.
My hands are sleeping now.
Let them rest,
while I look at their innocence.

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