An Ode to My Hands

A rude awakening. 

Splotches of coffee on my crisp white shirt, I burned my fingers trying to clean the mess. A scathing hot sting, I bit down hard on the bruised crevice to alleviate the pain. 

But that was this morning. 

Now I am sitting at my desk in the office, flipping through piles of paper neatly stacked on the table. The icy draught coming from the air conditioner impales my delicate hands, and then I pull them back. Maybe that’s why they don’t feel like they did before; like satin and velvet had been coated intricately as a layer. Maybe the reason they don't feel like before is because of the constant spritz of sanitizers wherever I go; the stinging after-effect and the immediate rush of strongly-scented chemicals that sit heavy in the air aren’t doing any good to them. Why didn’t I notice this before? 

Trying to recall a time when my hands were bare, when they weren’t bruised and littered with marks of daily strife. I admire them in this thought; the way they shine in the sunlight, the nimble fingers tangling and disentangling while knotting a tie. How they move so effortlessly gliding across the keys of the piano, and when they stomp all over the keyboard of my laptop, creating art on a screen.

I remember all of this now, sitting across the vanity, catching eyes with a million different bottles of face creams, eye creams, body creams. But what about my burdened and battered hands?

I raise my sprightly fingers and then clasp them tight together. Then I begin writing an ode to my hands.

Calloused and exploited, but not damaged beyond repair- I appreciate all the little things you do, like cook and clean and twist.

I promise to take good care of you.