tug at the teats

of a contented cow,

gently but firmly

drawing the milk down.

Hands with the sixth sense

of the blind,

provide ecstasy to a loved one.

Worn leathery hands know their way

around the heft of a stone

and the texture of wool on a sheep.

With fine hand signals

hands talk to dogs and cats

and know how to soothe a fevered brow

or comfort a crying child.

Hands take things apart

and put them back together

better than new.

Hands cut diamonds.

They twist and turn in an akido stance,

shield loved ones from harm, remove splinters,

bury the dead and snap castanets,

clapping louder than anyone else.

Hands fly a plane into the night sky,

direct traffic like a Carabinieri

in a white uniform.

With only a shake,

Hands can make a dream come true.