With Her Hands

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With her knobby,
twisted hands,
she has felt the
silt of soil on the
jungle gym,
she has touched the
grit of the sandbox
next to her playmates.

With her knotted,
pockmarked hands,
she has dabbed
on the vibrant lipstick
of adolescence,
she has
brushed her salty tears away
following her first relationship.

with her yellowed,
blue-veined hands,
she has received
her golden marriage ring,
she has reverently swaddled
the softness of her first child.

With her shaky,
mottled hands,
she has scrubbed
the last layer of hardened oatmeal
off the bottom of the
cracked bowl,
she has
pressed the button on the camera
to take the photograph of her only son
in his graduation gown.

With her discolored,
uneven hands,
she has placed the
multicolored pills carefully
into the days of the week
medicine holder for her husband,
and then caressed the engravement
"a father to all"
on his tombstone.

With her arthritic,
weakened hands,
she has eaten her
cream of wheat,
alone,
at a table set for three.
She has reached
in the morning
to embrace the family
she can no longer hold.

With her wizened,
loving hands,
she has held the world,
she has moved a mountain,
she has molded a life.





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