Handles


I never considered

handles before this, 

never wondered who’d

held my borrowed basket last


filled it, gripped it tight,

placed it back neat or

abandoned by checkout, 

unsettling us in its eerie.


Didn’t ask, didn’t wonder

what those hands did, who

they touched waved slapped

caressed, ever so tender.


Did they stare at the milk like me?

fingering packets of biscuits for

a treat, for this once, 

at this time?


hanging out by the fridge,

small English ghosts of 

Ginsberg’s lost Whitman,

reductions to clear by today.


My own baton passer

Who are you? Who were you?

Did you cough? Did you clap?

Did you catch it


in the crook of an elbow

Like a good girl, good boy?

And before you?

And before them?


How many hands,

How many hearts?

How many, how many 

can one handle handle?

One thought on “Handles

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