Calloused hands
slide over the parts that you
You can’t put a value on quality.
Milling about under fine stars
I thought about you as
I researched my antique table.
I ached for some idea of what you knew.
Wanted to know who took your hand
If anyone and showed you
What cities were famous
What lines were solid and when Baroque bested Nouveau.
It was your birthday last month.
I forgot and the day passed
no glance toward the heavens
No silent acknowledgment lip passed.
Later that week, I linked the downward turn over to you.
But i could have needed more
water, sleep, or perhaps less
food and wine.

I don’t know what I’ll never know
If my furtive state was like yours (our eyes were the same shape)
or if your hands and feet became calloused with no effort.
If you ever gardened…
That’s how my hands get calluses,
I guess, and you
lived with a dog and a cat
over three houses where gems
were stored with the furniture
you knew everything about.
I am only learning.
But never who led you down
what led you where.
The intimate lines between
the “Higher Forces at Work”
And how the story will ever end.