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The newness is precious, even perfect, as the touch is smooth.
Unravaged yet by time, supple, yet genuinely awkward. 
Eagerly grasping, wanting, playing too, yet always learning.
Learning, that pain is sometimes a part of the growing, yet necessary; a sting.
I take for granted the youth and strength of each given member, until…
My eyes behold the necessity of them, taking for granted the frailty.
Years of service, use, and abuse, but always working, little time for play now.
I notice them more often, changing with time, it becomes more prevalent; dark spots.
The newness has worn off; the supple smoothness has been replaced.
Scars now grace the surface and tell of a far different dream than imagined.
Glimpses of a life that has somehow slipped by, without a thought, but with many cares.
Memories that now strain to find solace in actions once performed, but no longer with grace, or ease.
I used to stare, wondering at the love and duties performed by the one who’d gone before me.
Now I stare in amazement, aged and wrinkled with time and duty, scars and years of service telling their own story.
They delivered instructions, discipline, love and hugs, security, protection, and many things forgotten.
They’ve held others, in love, and in safety, in friendship, and in death, and they have also struck out in anger.
I stare down in wonder, yet no longer my mother’s hands, but my very own, nearing the end of their journey.
I wonder; how did I get here so fast? How did the years slip by without my notice?
Whether long or short, good or bad, hands are the longest and purest glimpse at any given life

Copyright © Karen Rivello | Year Posted 2020


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