Friday, October 28, 2016

Old Lady Hands

When I was eleven or twelve
A classmate of mine
A girl
Told me that I had old lady hands.

She was twelve.

How could she have known
That her offhanded comment
Would forever shape the way
I looked at my hands?

How could she have known
That her offhanded comment
Would forever shape the way
I looked at my body?

Could you have old lady hands
And a young, sexy body?

Could you have old lady hands
And a beautiful face?

Could you have old lady hands
And a strong, intelligent, liberal mind?

I now look at my hands
My old lady hands
As they are.
Older lady hands.

They are the hands that have held my babies.
Sometimes one,
Sometimes two,
Sometimes even three.

They are the hands that have wiped tears,
Stroked hair,
held the hands,
of my own
and countless other children.
Still my kids.

They are the hands that have held the adoring face
of the man I love.
Scratched his back
Rubbed his shoulders
Comforted his soul.

They have blue and bold veins
Running through the back of them
Through the brown tanned and weathered skin.
Veins that carry the blood that pumps
To keep me alive.

They have peach palms
mapped with lines of love
And adventure
And sorrow
And misfortune
And experience.

On my pinky you can feel the scar
Of too many cuts
From too many brambles
Through too many trips
Through the woods of my childhood home.

On my wrist you can barely see the scar
Of a fist mistakenly going through glass
In an effort to help.

On my fingers the tan lines made from rings -
One symbolizing my commitment to my husband.
The other a commitment to my family and my heritage.

When I was eleven or twelve
A classmate of mine
A girl
Told me I had old lady hands

I now take that as a compliment.



3 comments:

  1. From one older lady to another: Just. Lovely.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Love this! You write so beautifully. I'm so moved by your words, and love getting to know more about you.

    ReplyDelete