Hands

I tell her in a text:
she is the constant background
of my heart. This could
have easily led to
a song of images,
beautiful abstractions,
(constant backgrounds)
(constant cravings) but
I want to sing instead
of the more concrete
so, let me sing a song
of my lover’s hands.
She doesn’t like her hands.
In the past, men and women
have shamed her for how her hands look.
Her hands are beautiful.
stunningly beautiful, radiant,
every line, every knuckle, every movement of them.
When I first met her
I couldn’t keep my hands off her hands.
I find myself drawn again and again
to just looking at them. Her hands
have touched me gently on the face,
fiercely, gently, pulled me into her,
given me the right-sized slap
given me pleasure, affection,
stroked through my hair
massaged my muscles. Her hands
have held those of refugees
telling stories of unimaginable horror.
Her hands have wielded a chainsaw
as delicately as a violinist’s bow
creating objects I couldn’t make
with any tool. They have created
ways to communicate
the stories of those
whose stories were not being told.
Her hands held those
of her mother and sister
as they neared death,
held the hands of friends in grief and joy,
held other lovers in passion.
They have made-believe
with the youngest of cousins.
Let me sing you a song
of my lover’s hands
with all their lines of beauty,
their desire and aching
tenderness: her hands are beautiful.
Don’t let her tell you
differently. Her hands
are the constant background
of my desire.

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