A Brief History of Our Hands

I remember the first time I held a boy's hand.

His name was Connor.

I was 13.

He was chivalrous (in a middle school way, of course)

We were walking to gym class together in the fall and I was cold so he gave me his sweatshirt.

He was my boyfriend

He walked me to class

He told me my eyes were pretty

He said I love you  (but over text wrote “luv u” or “ily”)

He kissed me for 6 seconds under a tree in Central Park

Then broke up with me a day later

(but I’m getting ahead of myself,

let’s talk about hands).

He stopped in the middle of our walk

Looked down to my hand

And quickly intertwined his fingers with mine.

I thought nothing could ever feel better

Until I met you.

Our first kiss coincided with the first time we held hands

And from then on

You reminded me of how 

“that happens to no one”


It was a sign that we were more than just two bodies colliding.

“In fact,”

You said

It was in that moment -

Eyes closed, lips embraced,

The unconscious magnetism 

Of palm kissing palm -

That you knew you loved me.

To this day

I catch myself looking down at my hands.

I count the indented wrinkles

The dryness in their crevices

The rigidly bitten nails

(which you used to kiss and tell me were beautiful)

I draw circles around the rings of my fingerprints -

I even try holding my own hand

(I can never trick myself into thinking it's yours).

Each time I’m disappointed.

For it simply looks like a hand

Yet for you,

It somehow looked like love.