Your Hands

Harvey and Irene Gosnell
(My Maternal Grandparents)

After all these years,
a quarter-century past,
there is a printed-off copy
an old black-and-white photo
holding your images,
sitting framed on my desk.
I pick it up —
So genuinely the two of you
in looks, posture, characteristics
that I am
brought to heated tears —
as I hold you in my hands

Three generations
of daughters grown to life
in the house with a garden,
tea-cup roses, gladiolas, daffodils,
and tiger-lilies painting
the vast-long days lived
held in your hands.

I’m the last
almost-daughter
of your ancient, dark days —
(One born of blood-love,
One born of mercy-love,
One born of sorrow-love.)
Fifty years of little girls
becoming women
becoming lost — slipping
from your hands — but you

planted the seeds becoming traits
that would manifest and bloom
over time
like the much-loved roses
down the side of the yard.
We were all cultivated
in the same love,
the same soil.

I hold you in my hands
suddenly notice
that your hands look worn
old and tired
from all the years spent
planting and harvesting.

~May 2012

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3 thoughts on “Your Hands

  1. Thank you. Yes, as I grow older and deal with grand-babies of my own, I realize how deep their love and efforts truly ran. I am always grateful for the people they were. Thanks so much for reading and leaving a comment!

    Like

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