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Grandma's Hands This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This work has won the Teen Ink contest in its category.

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Looking back at photographs
Taken many years ago,
Back before the snow-white hair
And laugh lines started to show,
There's her image
Smiling ... captured
In each album on the shelf
The photos faded,
Corners worn
By curious grandchildren
Like myself.
Strange to think she was once a child
How small those hands could be ...
That once caught bugs
And held broken crayons
Drawing pictures ... just like me.
Sticky with juice and peanut butter,
Smeared with blots of ink,
Tiny and pudgy with childhood ...
And those fingernails were pink.
Strange to think she was once a teen
How delicate those hands could be ...
That once scribbled essays
Or notes during class
Chatting tirelessly ... just like me.
Carrying books or greeting her friends
With a good-natured wave and a wink,
Youthful and wispy and timeless ...
And those fingernails were pink.
Photos of her as a young mother too
How busy those hands could be ...
That once carried groceries
And cooked numerous meals,
Or bandaged up a scraped knee.
Adorned with a beautiful wedding ring,
Submersed in a soapy sink,
Roughed a little from gardening ...
And those fingernails were pink.
Freeze-framed in my memory,
Are those hands shuffling decks of cards,
Teaching grandchildren how to play euchre,
Or cutting rhubarb for us in the yard.
Filling our buckets with candy
Each and every Halloween,
Or scooting along in her walker
With the charm and smile of a queen.
And when she left us,
I held her hand ...
And as I paused to think,
I smiled ...
For I could not recall a time
when those fingernails
weren't pink.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

This work has won the Teen Ink contest in its category. This piece won the October 2004 Teen Ink Poetry Contest.





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lilnanny said...
Jan. 26, 2009 at 4:48 am:
I thought this was a very sweet observation by a grandchild of a beloved GrandMother. Good job !!!
 
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