Monday, August 10, 2009

The Hands

Hands


"Here," she said, "in this here place, we flesh; flesh that weeps, laughs; flesh that dances on bare feet in grass. Love it. Love it hard. Yonder they do not love your flesh. They despise it. They don't love your eyes; they'd just as soon pick em out. No more do they love the skin on your back. Yonder they flay it. And O my people they do not love your hands. Those they only use, tie, bind, chop off and leave empty. Love your hands! Love them. Raise them up and kiss them. Touch others with them, pat them together, stroke them on your face 'cause they don't love that either. You got to love it, You! ... This is flesh I'm talking about here. Flesh that needs to be loved." -- Toni Morrison


"The fragrance always remains in the hand that gives the rose." -- Heda Bejar

"The hand is the cutting edge of the mind." -- Jacob Bronowski

"You can't shake hands with a clenched fist." -- Indira Gandhi

"Hold a true friend with both hands." -- Nigerian Proverb

"The ultimate test of a relationship is to disagree but hold hands." -- Alexander Penney


I am watching my hands move over the keys of my keyboard. They are following the almost instantaneous commands from my brain to press the appropriate key. They are forming these very words with the speed that I have acquired through constant typing, legal dictation, and of course, chatting with my beloved friends. My hands are not incredibly beautiful; I do not have a manicure; there are scars from when I used to cut myself; finger marks from when my sister used to pinch me till I bled; and I have a touch of eczema on the top of my hands, which is slowly disappearing, but despite these imperfections, I love my hands. I love the callous that is on the middle finger of my right hand. They are expressive, and it is not a true conversation with me if my hands are not waving around, accentuating a point with an air chop.

I have said in another journal that I believe the hands are some of the most attractive parts of the body for me. They convey so many things about a person-- whether they work a lot with their hands, their strength (conversely their weakness), their level of nervousness, their sensitivity, how hygenic they are, and myriad more things. When meeting someone for the first time, their handshake is such a vital part of the exchange and how we perceive them whether we are aware of it or not. Hank Hill, from the cartoon series King of the Hill, once lost all faith in his political candidate because when he shook his hand, it was limp and clammy.

What do we do with hands? With these hands I can draw and write; I apply pressure to a wound; I check my children's temperature; I cook meals; I check bath water; and I tie the errant shoe lace. My hands are very important to how I share my emotions with other people. What can be perceived with just one touch is incredible. Being a tactile person, I love the feel of different textures and fabrics. Whether I am caressing the skin of my lover or petting my guinea pigs, the information I receive from the tips of my fingers are invaluable to how I perceive the situation. They are a gift.

I could probably write a lot more, but I think this adequately describes my love of hands.

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