Rough fingertips, worn and calloused

Touch the air and tell me otherwise

They have pulled a trigger

And caressed the luminous silk of

An infant’s head.

The have massaged a heart that stopped beating –

To no avail

And cracked the fingers of a rival in a whirlpool

Of spiral fractures.

They have made music on the necks of violins

Churning me to weep inside –

Pointed with derision and anger

When upset.

They have pounded corn, opened books,

Fixed flat tires, burned on cooking stones –

Making food for my children.

They have touched women in burning passion,

Wiped blood from my wounds

Handled food that I fed myself and others

They have pet dogs and held me to cliff faces.

They have dug holes in the sandy ground which I have slept in,

Serving as pillows against the earth.

Shame has come and gone in cycles with these tools.

They wrote these words.

Am I my fingertips, or are they me?

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