Shall I divulge where these hands have been, what wonders
and atrocities crafted through sinew and bone?
I believe it was my left hand that grasped the embryonic fluid
while the other reaching for a lump to keep this babe from exiting,
my subconscious already knew I was priming for war.
Fingertips pressed into dough caressing the skin of my beloved,
tenaciously addressing one’s need for affection and heat stroke,
those very same hands slipped into the snowblower you were a stump,
a stump thereafter, as with the wounds of many soldiers, many who fight
to grapple with beholding sharp knives, prepping vegetables for the hungry.
Those hands, hungry hands, hands of money cashed out money counting money dealing money depositing money, money hands grasp unto gold,
worker hands unto the cheque, cash the cheque live ever more.
These hands have trained through falling, scraping bending breaking swelling
beating shrinking elongating, browning, yellowing, pink-white hue in you
weather dictates these hands lemons enable hands to scream when anointed
with fresh juice inside a paper cut.
What they have held I cannot share openly, certain stories go right to the grave, hands know you know, that is the end of knowing, when crossed limp hands filled with injectables inside the coffin remind you of something,
Fingers how they create write paint eloquent sonnetts stashed in centurial bottles thrown overboard into the ocean, to be found by the smoker by the seaside whose concern is only, how to get his next stash.
Gash, so many gashes on these hands, oh, band aid factory my hands have employed your children, and their children, and after that too. After hours, drinks and fingers licking finger licking good stir fried to perfection liking fingers the grease it melts, inside the cracks, honey doughnuts at carnivals, marinade unfolding your creases whilst you saturate your palms in the canvas coating of what poultry is released, into.
Oh, these hands they cupped the burning oven, emergency wards and stitches, yoga poses and lifting of the human core, how such a feat? Fingers aligned they compose incredible musical repertoire, they beat and they murder too. The hands are complicated they have minds, too.
If hands could speak of their undertaking, they may simply remain silent, begging you for a sprinkling of lotion to smother the cracks, or for their inversion so that you can taste everything that you have done.
Anna Rozwadowska 2019