• ahreljay

Her Hands Are a Piece of Home

Updated: Mar 23

Her hands, small with wrinkles that

crawl up her arms and into her smile,

have so many stories to tell.


They are shaking, yes,

but they are beautiful.


They have embraced

child

after

child—

four of her own, eight of theirs,

one great-grand on the way.

Even strangers have entrusted

their loved ones to her care.


Her hands taught students

how to correctly hold their pencils

and loop cursive words.

They directed voices—

alto, tenor, soprano—

and have danced on the piano

for seventy years.


Her hands have passed

the salt at numerous

family dinners,

twisted and fried

the homemade pretzels

we barely got rolled out,

and shared in decorating

Christmas cookies last year— blue stockings and snowmen, yellow Santas.

Kindergarteers could have outdone us.


Her hands have shuffled cards

for endless rounds

of cribbage and Phase 10.

They have put hundreds

of puzzles together.

Break them all up; form the pictures again.

Once is never enough for me.


Her hands have reached for those

learning to stand and walk.

And they reach for me

to let me know I’m not alone as I walk farther into adulthood.


Her hands have clapped out syllables

to teach others how to read and talk.

And they proudly clap for me

with every goal I accomplish.


Her hands have wiped tears away

from playtime bumps and bruises.

And they wipe mine away

when life bruises my heart.


Her hands, they’re small. Her hands, they shake.

Her hands, they’re wrinkled.

Oh, but her hands—

they’re beautiful;

Oh, her hands—

they’re a piece

of home.

©2019 by Bind The Heart