Together Hands: A Poem

We slipped out

Of each other’s grasp.

And the hands

that used to fast clasp

slid out in gradual

movements inch by inch

of skin slipping from skin.

 

First, it was the occasional

handshake with cool eyes,

As if those eyes never

learned how to telepath

secrets one iris to another.

Frigid smiles on frosted lips

As if these lips have never

laughed, joked, cried together.

 

Slipping. Slipping.

We kept slipping.

Away from each other and

the warm, warm hands

of forever friendship.

Now, we don’t touch.

 

I don’t know your palm

as well as I know mine.

I can’t trace your fortune,

in the lines carved into

your open, caring heart.

 

But the thing about hands

that have grown together

blistered with patterns of

matching callouses…

 

The thing about hands that

held each other with love

and with girlhood secrets…

 

The thing about such hands

is that they always find their

way back to one another.

 

And if I took your hand in

my own now withered one,

I’m willing to bet

we would still match.

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