Typed Music

Poems.

I suppose these are just little pieces of me, wrapped up in words.

The forgotten melodies of my mind.

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83. "Cack-handed"

You can never skip an opportunity to call yourself that

Because you’re your ma’s son:

Didn’t get caught up in the tool shed

Got spiked through with the hooked art of repeating yourself instead

 

Should I feel insulted then

That these cracked, digited fringes

These rejects of your diminutive anatomy

Are how you love me?

 

You love me with the unvoiced, unexplained idiocy

Of fingers that make Mexican waves

To one particular song

And lure mine to come dancing too

 

You love me with the whorls where you keep your DNA

Counting the concaves in my skeleton:

Explore them, soothe them

Wonder if you made them

 

And I think you fear that

If you ceased to trace me as I grew –

A carpenter sifting through the age rings in my spine –

I’d only feel the dislocating vagueness

Of an absence too menial to be mourned.

 

“Cack-handed”

But I remember different:

I remember your hands like leather,

All heated and scratchy from your pockets,

Unhooking the problems from my mouth.

And how the weather’d teethed on them,

Gnawed away chunks down around the cuticles

Until they were dry and scarred like February –

February getting lost in its own bleak cavernousness

 

They stir the rag in the shoe polish,

And the burnt spoon in the bean tin.

 

I used to try to pinch them

But my nails were too soft

And your palms too crusted

But when they tell me “thick-skinned”

I shake my head and think

“No, beautifully cack-handed”

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