Touch: The Journal of Healing


My Mother’s Hands

    by Tina Hacker

Photographs won’t show me

any truths about her.

The lens doesn’t embrace

the details I embraced.

My hands are the truer camera.

Every gesture, every attitude

of my fingers

captures snapshots of her life.

My mother’s hands and mine

don’t carry exact shapes

of finger and palm and nail.

Still, throughout each day,

I see her image, sharp and defined,

mimicked in each movement

as if her spirit were hiding

under my fingertips.

I lay my hand on a keyboard,

pull a tissue from a box,

slide my fingers across the smooth skin

of a silk scarf, and her face,

her thoughts, her moods

emerge from the touch.

My fingers reflect her likeness

as they curl around a glass,

grasp a spoon,

push a button on an elevator.

The half moon of my hand

resting on the arm of the sofa

imitates the tilt of her wrist,

the slant of her fingers in repose.


My fingers move to her rhythms,

tempos I hear only when

my hands play them.

Her spirit takes form

before my eyes,


© 2009 Tina Hacker

A Pushcart Prize nominee, Tina Hacker was a finalist in New Letters and George F. Wedge competitions.  Her poetry has appeared in journals such as Bellowing Ark, Blue Unicorn, Piedmont Literary Review, I-70 Review, Mid-America Poetry Review, Kansas City Voices; two anthologies, Show + Tell and Missouri Poets; and upcoming anthologies from Helicon Nine Editions and the Imagination & Place Press.


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Touch: The Journal of Healing

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