Brick by brick
Layer by layer
Hands wet and moist
Covered in clay and mud.

Layer upon layer
Up and up
I built a fortress.

It provided safety
And shelter from the elements.
It was cozy and a haven.

Mine all mine.
Built by my own sweat,
Tears, and physical strength.

Made by my own hand
It was shapened and formed,
Embellished and flawed.

Little did I realize,
As I was building a fortress
All around me,
I forgot to build a door.

Along with protection from the elements,
I was locked in,
Unable to express my truth
To another or to myself.

When the walls finally were torn down,
By time or willpower,
I set myself free.

It was safe to feel my feelings.
All my feelings.

Behind the clay and mud
I uncovered a temple.
A brightly lit hidden treasure.

Put there by my labor
And long forgotten.

A jewel that needed to be excavated
Once the walls came down.



My hands, oh, marvelous hands
They are more than an instrument
For survival and instinct.
They hold what is dear.
Protect and grasp.
They lovingly clasp hands
Overlapping the fingers of another
Like a zipper
All knit and closed up.

They carry more than their weight
And sometimes I burden them
as I try to hold more
than is manageable.

They are in tune with the seasons
Even when my head 
and thoughts are not.

They reflect time and age.
There is no denying the changing
Shape and texture over the years.

They hold my pen and
Create shapes that move
Across the page.
They allow me to type and
Send my stories across
The globe. 
And with a click of a button,
My hands reach out to you.

My hands,
Just for today,
I will appreciate all you do,
Routinized and mechanical at times,
Without much thought
You are always there for me.
So today, I celebrate
and thank you.

Coffee break

My hands cupped around 
the warm coffee mug.
It is full of aroma
And I savor the flavor.

My fingers hook
gently yet firmly
on the handle as
I bring it in 
for a sip.
The warm liquid gets
swallowed down my throat
as I promptly go in 
for another taste.

If I get distracted
with conversation,
with technology,
with making future plans
or anything that takes me away
from the simple pleasure
of drinking fresh coffee,
the liquid starts to cool
and moment by moment,
its flavor gets diminished.

The joy and pleasure
is fleeting.
And it is my intention
and attention alone
that keeps me centered
in the here and now
and not in autopilot.

The warm flavor
recedes like the
rip current that calls
waves back into
the sea.

I can still feel the
faint warmth of my coffee mug
cupped gently in my hands.
I do not want to squander
one bit of this
temporary reprieve of
the hustle and bustle of what we call
modern life.