This is Day Twenty-Six of Paul Brookes’ January going into February Ekphrastic Challenge. All of the artwork is wonderful, but once I saw Kerfe Roig’s “These Hands,” I had to write about them.
Her hands are a kaleidoscope,
holding within all the colors,
shapes, textures she once touched.
Far distant memories telescoped
and brought close—flaking pink polish on her nails
makes her think of flowers that grew in her garden,
her crooked finger,
reminds her of her mother’s hands.
Her hands are a map,
the etched lines a pathway showing where she’s gone
and where she’s heading. That crosshatch marks the years
of the now-demolished city shop
where she touched goods and gestured to customers—
these show the first time
she picked up a paintbrush, or
held a small boy’s hand as he scampered on a beach.
She sees his boy-face in her mind, clearer to her than his man-face,
though it’s been decades since he was a boy. Her hands
are treasure boxes full of memories—everything she has ever touched—children,
flowers, pets, lovers. She can’t see the spots on her skin, or
the wrinkled creases, but she can feel the touch of my skin—
my hand holding hers.