Reclamation

By Raisa Moola

I was told at the age of 5
that my future husband would one day see my hands at the altar and
before placing the ring on that heartlinefinger,
he would leave because
Stop biting your nails! That’s a filthy habit. Little girls don’t do that.
23 holds desperately, tightly onto 5 whose fingertips were occasionally dipped in chilli powder and always
always swatted away.

These hands are chubby and chewed-on and tobacco-stained.
These hands have touched and felt and traced outlines of unsaid words.
These hands have been shaky and sweaty because of crushes and class presentations.
These hands have held cancer-ridden bodies and morse-coded iloveyous that couldn’t be heard.
These hands have written me into today.

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