an old woman’s smile
“you can tell how old i am by my hands.”
she said, as she stretched her fingers to me
and indeed i could trace her journey through life
as clearly as reading the rings on a tree
she rotated each hand and showed me her palms
as though i would like to read the many lines
but she shook and trembled and i saw only a blur
so i gathered her hands in mine
“it isn’t important how old you are.”
i told her as i looked into her tired eyes
your face tells the story of where you have been
loving the land, the sea, and the skies
she slowly pulled back her hands from mine
and smiled as if angels had appeared
and said, “thanks, you’ve made an old homeless woman smile.”
and all it took was to show that somebody cared
. tolbert