My Father's Hands

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His calluses make his hands as stone

                 the skin is rough as sandpaper

he does not know a delicate touch

but put rocks in his grasp and he is a poet

                an artist

they are cracked

and sun-darkened


they can be kind

but they can fall like hammers

                his is a quick temper,

                but he fights with his mouth first

                it takes a great deal

               -or a great drink

               before his fists involve themselves

his grip is iron as he supports you

               there is no doubt-

               you will not fall


a knife is a paintbrush in his grasp

              smell the lime

              the cilantro

              the slowly charring meat

his fajitas are worth craving

             - though he always burns the tortillas,

             every time


his hands have slowed

the knuckles

             gnarled

the skin has sliced and scarred

but there is no grip safer

no hold that feels more like my childhood home.

Created: Jun 04, 2017

Tags: family, father, father's day 2017, father's day, hands, dad, father's hands, poem, poetry

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