22 December 2009


Hands just smaller than a deck of cards, and they could break stone, move mountains and uncover love where only ice used to dwell. She wiggles her fingers to melt glaciers. A curious sensation radiates from just under my breastbone, a blood-warm bow shock racing ahead of the calving bergs of my heart.

Her hands, those soft chisels, are running through the sand in front of us. She is giggling. The sound makes me laugh and swoon simultaneously. So absorbed in the task of finding sand dollars and crab shells, the artist is oblivious to the meltwater gathering in the corners of my eyes. Those hands. Beauty created and creator, like that Escher drawing of two hands opposed, each drawing the other.

I muse to myself: is she drawing my heart, filling the void I had carried so long like a geode that had never been opened? Or was she chiseling away the gray-white stone around it, long buried under calciferous strata of ossified love and life? Hope flares up, I wonder if the stone of my heart still carried a molten core. The warm waves pulse and multiply. She looks up at me and smiles.

Plate shift. The fault slips, the halves of my heart groan and scrape with the release of tectonic energy. The warmth in my chest threatens to overwhelm me. I laugh nervously fearing that if I do open my mouth, lava will pour forth rather than the words I really want to speak. I peer into pale blue diamond eyes as the sculptress holds up her treasure, a sand dollar worn smooth by the affections of countless eager children.

"Daddy, I found a shell!" Enthusiasm beams from an angel face that quickly turns its attentions back to the touch and explore display to find more shells. "Yes, you did, sweet pea!" I reply, watching those alabaster hands sift through the sand.

The hammer rises, an iron-grey blur landing with the sound of a bell on the head of the chisel. The stone splits wide, jagged halves falling away. The sculptress laughs, all soft chimes and sugar. Her hands cradle my new-born heart, gently brushing off the sand as she holds it up to the light.

I wipe the liquid prisms from my eyes, love warming in the hands of the sculptress.


  1. *nods sagely as reads of "calciferous strata", hiding any ignorance of the meaning of "calciferous", double-click to select it, CTRL+C,CTRL+T,CTRL+K,CTRL+V,ENTER, ahhhhhhh*

    I really enjoyed the father perspective in this.

  2. I "know" that love. And you nailed it!

  3. Good stuff, Irish. You gotta love the wee children: their ability to heal us with their very presence is magic.

  4. The beauty of a child.

    Very well said Irish.

  5. This is like happiness in concentrate.

  6. methinks, that when TheHolyOneblessedbehisname was giving out writing chops, you hogged the line for three servings.
    shame on you.
    there are two poorer souls running around
    all because of you.
    shame indeed.

  7. Sure poetry in motion applied to the little ones Irish.

  8. Beautiful! And [blessedly] she will no doubt do it again and again.

  9. Enjoy all her little precious moments. She'll grow up so quickly, before you even know it.

  10. I'm with justsomethoughts. Also, wtf is mo talking about?

  11. Such sweet and loving thoughts. So glad you have your little sweet pea to warm your heart.
    Joyeaux Noel, my gumbo friend!

  12. and at 40 something, i wonder if my daddy, sleeping on the couch in the other room thought about me and my hands like this when I was a wee little coon ass......i hope he did...

  13. She has you and knows it. Awesome imagery.


"Let your laws come undone
Don't suffer your crimes
Let the love in your heart take control..."

-'The Hair Song', by Black Mountain

Tell me what is in your heart...