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by Carol Parris Krauss

I remember from all the men--the hands.
Hands marking moments whether
coming or going. First there was Juan,

big feet--marvelous hands. Tracked and lean
with mountainous veins pulsing a salsa
or flamenco night. Then later there was Robert,

a father's hands gentle yet mighty,
one pinkie grasped tight by Kelly. Downy hands of
a father but not a husband of any kind. Don,

tan and neatly trimmed a manicurist's dreams.
Stroking down my spine or halos whispering
across my cheek. Or waving good-bye with his

suitcase and my fine jewelry. Frankie, the jock,
with muscular and stunted hands. Always fumbling
and wringing for the right gestures or words. Nervous

hands of rum and Serzone. The hands mark the moments;
the faces are gone, the smells vaporized, the garments
disposed of but the hands--they remain.

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