poetry found

Fathers’ Hands

by David Sloan (Goodreads Author)

Carving a bow for my son, who wantsa weapon to terrorize squirrels
and deliver the world, I snag the blade,
fumble the whittle stroke and slice my finger.
The cut oozes. My hand is sturdy,
scarred, nothing like my father’s—
unmarked, maple-colored.

His hands stitched gashes without a flinch.
They mortared rock walls to hold a hillside up.
On the violin, his fingers flew like wingtips.
Once as a child I saw sparks spray
from that smoking bow. He tried to teach
my hands how to drive a nail straight,
which spans would bear a load
and which would snap, how to follow
the grain of things, how to hear notes first,
then pluck them as if out of a peach tree.

A single feather in his hair, my son stalks
the squirrel, holds the bow steady,
draws back the shaft, aims, lets fly.
Target and archer are unruffled by the miss.
He bounds over to the arrow, takes it
in his nimble fingers, so like his father’s
father’s, and nocks the end,
eager to aim, miss and aim again.

Again trying to expand my horizons through poetry. I love the image of the hands and how they fix their children’s world. I also like the buoyancy of the last verse, such an excellent way to describe the optimism of youth. Goodreads does have some very good picks each month. They also run a contest to pick these poems, so here is how to submit yours if you want!

Want your words to reach millions of people? Goodreads and the ¡POETRY! group have partnered to host an ongoing poetry contest. Join the ¡POETRY!group and vote each month to pick a winner from among the finalists. You can also submit a poem for consideration–Goodreads



Filed under Poetry Wednesday

3 responses to “poetry found

  1. Yes, I love the Hands image too. They’re so varied from person to person, aren’t they? I remember looking at my mum’s years ago – same size as mine but wrinkled, red from washing up and life as a cleaner. I looked at my own hands, so young, the skin so taut and umblemished, thinking (rather vainly) how beautiful they were compared to Mum’s. Of course now, our hands are more alike 🙂


    • Yes, my hands are going that way too. I have always been fascinated by hands, they do seem to tell the story of a life

      Liked by 1 person

      • Unlike feet, which are often weird, covered in unpleasant lumps and rather unattractive (and in my son’s case- smelly), hands are wonderful examples of biological engineering – when you think of how flexible and sensitive they are, all the things they can achieve, they are remarkable. Up there with the eyeball for extraordinary feats of nature.

        Liked by 1 person

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