"Give me your hand, " he said, a needle in his.

The God of Open Palms

 I am the hand of a man
       cross-stitched with calluses
the texture of burlap
         mr. fix-it
with no dirt beneath my nails

I am here four fingers with a missing thumb
     dismembered from my body
wanting something to hold
        hoping there is                 anything
                    your heart (now grown cold)
could fit
          like a peach
                      I am  soft
as that hole                  in the head of a baby
                 each morning

I reach    thumbless and numb
                    but you are humming
                         some song
on the radio
         the news bewilders us all my dear, I fear I cannot fix the world
                  yet I try I do
         but you
                         are holding a glass up to the sun
                                             to see if you left
                                 any marks

               this is the psalm of  my open palm
                                      I am waiting for
           life lines and love lines &                                nothing
                                                        (but) thumbprints

Did you ever write something a long time ago and come upon the words many years later and wonder what the hell? And feel like you were trying to say something you could not see yet or perhaps feared? I wrote this before I met my husband. This past weekend was the 20th anniversary of the day I met him. (I'd had a first marriage from the age of  17- 24. I know. Never mind.) I was alone for the better part of 12 years. And now, I'm 18 years merry-ed. Merry-age. Yes, that was how we spelled it on our wedding invitation.

It was July. In my parent's backyard. Gilles' mother and my father officiated as we said our vows in English and in French. There were flowers and balloons. My boys walked me down the path. My husband inherited two teenagers and a traumatized dog we'd rescued from the shelter. I had married friends who thought I was nuts --love would fade and why marry? Just wait, they said. You'll see. He was the one who must have been crazy. 

What I see in the picture above is what I know now. I learned to trust. Again. I married a good and patient man.  

Yes, he's building a house, I'm writing a book. He reads The Complete Book of Plumbing, I'm re-reading a book on literary theory. He loves grey. I'm purple. We're not opposites, we're not even complementary, but we intersect like those life lines and love lines. We've been through much and we are still in love. Like many, many couples I meet. For real. Not in the celebrity world of well, celebrities.    

When you give your hand completely I think this means you trust the other person will be there to help you with the splinters and try their very best not to hurt you. Trust me, trust can happen. There is true love and great love. Might takes needles and tweezers to get out the splinters. These days there's so many stories of cheaters and abusers and opportunists and unhappy marriages, I just wanted to say there is such a thing as HOPEFUL ever after. A union where your higher selves can go on a canoe ride or go get the groceries and it's all the same. Roller coaster. Ferris Wheel. My wedding band is a wave. There is no land of perfect, but to me, trust is no small miracle. It also helps if you have an imagination--- your own inner space.

SO I'm starting to understand the poem-- I think. No, I do not take hallucinatory drugs.  

It is cool to be cool. I am not cool but corny and a fool for love. I'm going to go play Someone Like You by Van Morrison. IF you read this blog, leave a comment and tell me, what's your favourite love song?