hands have hailed taxis,
carried books, heavy books,
groceries, dying men, newborns;
they’ve picked up feathers,
dimes, held a bubble, blew a kiss
created, dismantled, dug in the mud
let the sand slip through.
These twenty-seven bones
have jerked off—
working together like a rehearsed
orchestra. Even now they’re
a step ahead of me
the phalanges in my finger and thumbs
rousing the metacarpal of my palm.
Once, I had my palm read,
laid out a hundred bucks
for someone to tell me
if I was expecting
a long life, short life—
then I didn’t care.There are fourteen finger bones
but I wear no ring—
I let the eight small bones
of my delicate wrist carry
I’ve seen my hand move and bend
in almost every direction.
I’ve felt the pain of slamming it
in a car door.
But, when there’s nothing
between pauses and weightless space
hear my flesh cheer on my bones:
go ahead, touch him.
You won’t break,
you won’t break.