Well-Worn Hand

Donna Vorreyer

My cuticles split and bleed as if

they had dug a garden without tools,

had clawed their way out of a grave.

Why do I still reach for you?  

All I want is one smooth touch,

the stroke of silk, my dry roots

drinking up moisture, plumping,

filling in the lines and ditches.   

All I want is to hold something

beautiful, to be full to bursting

with the liquid bliss of rivers,

with the cool smooth of a stone.

What I have instead: a place where  

edges curl and blur, a place I feel

in the webs of your fingers, the rose

of your fist. I rub my sandpaper palm

against your door, hope flaking to dust.