Monday, January 17, 2011

My whole life I've hated my hands. Short and stubby sausage fingers that I've likened to those of a twelve year old boy. My finger nails grow wide and wonky and no matter how much I slather them with Burt's Bees, my cuticles have never enjoyed more than five minutes of softness. But sitting beside of my Daddy the final few hours of his life, whispering love words to him, I kissed and stroked and held his big swollen fingers and Wendy said to me, "Look, Janet. You've got Daddy's hands." And I thought about all those times when I was little, walking around amusement parks and flea markets with Daddy and how I'd hold his finger. His hands were too large for me to grasp comfortably, so instead he'd hold out his index finger. I thought about the wood that they carried and the fires that they tended, the babies they held and cotton they picked and cows they milked and wounds they tended and all the doors they held open, both literal and figurative. I'd like to think they're not all I've inherited from him. But even if they were, it would be plenty.

No comments: