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14 December 2008 @ 05:49 pm
both hands  
always trying to come up with a sentence
that boils it down
says it all
today i try "both hands"

it's what makes loving jenner so easy
when he does something he uses both hands
when he listens, it's with both ears
when he sees, it's with both eyes
he focuses
on what's in front of him and nothing in the periphery
if he didn't love me, i'd think it anyway
(the inherent question does not escape my notice
i escape it)
that quiet, persistent curiousity about who i am and why i do that
both hands holding melissa's in alaska
both hands holding mine in seattle, indiana, wherever
when i ask him to the table
he comes to the table
or not at all

if i'm very lucky
if we're very lucky
you use both hands too
and we sign and communicate in waves
like deaf-blind people

rachelle uses both hands
crafts words from ice and plaster and hair and lockets
and whatever is between the cushions on the couch
and says that thing i didn't have words for
(i read them and re-read them and re-read them)
i light a match and smile and we can burn back and forth
she lights a match
we burn back and forth
both hands marred and scarred
and we'll do it again

ilsa uses both hands
draws symbols on naked walls
leaves the corners to speak for themselves
knows what light and shadow does
and why cats form religion in that distinction
she takes cosmology and geometry and calculus
boils it down to a simple law
says that thing i didn't have words for
(i gain and lose understanding in the pause of breath
between this sentence and that
i'm undermined at the next line
it doesn't matter, i'm here for the dance, i'm here for the journey)
we build worlds and burn them down
because nothing lasts
even with both hands

china mieville uses both hands
he's beating the shit out of us with two archaic dictionaries
and his intrinsic sense of right
as it faces the world's intrinsic selfishness
like a high brow henry rollins (nictitate, wink, the difference i see)
like a self-righteous michael franti
like ani difranco with more vitriol
not out to save the world
not out to save you
not even out to save himself
i noticed this, i did this, i don't understand this, it wasn't that noble
(he writes)
with both hands

i learn to use both hands
watching what you do with yours

allen gives me a gift with both hands
i learn something new
it beats at my chest, insisting

i don't care about your drama (or mine)
i care about how you invited it in (how I invited it in)
and what you're doing now that it's here (I'm thinking things through)
and how it makes you feel (I never know)
and what you'll change because you can (I can)
where are your hands?
are they grasping, supplicating
defending
are they dismissing, fixing
building

i still can't tell you what sets us apart
what i've sought that i find in you
it's not about hands
and if it is, it's about giving more than grasping
and maybe why we're unbalanced
off-kilter
always seem to be fighting to get the words out
waiting, and hoping, for a return on the dividend
a witness
a totally different perspective on the same exact thing
a conference between narrators, is it just me?
no
none of this is about me, or you
it's about something else
it's not about love
though i might lean on that word in my lack of eloquence

it is a brief escape from futility
a spark of belief that something i do matters
in seeing that something you do matters to me
inspires me
makes me think
makes me want to understand
even when i can't
even with both hands
 
 
Current Music: "Both Hands" - Ani Difranco
 
 
 
Angerieangerie on December 15th, 2008 02:59 am (UTC)
I took off my glasses, buried my face in my floor pillow and pulled my blanket over my head. ...and then put them back on and read it again.

Can't even tell you.