the story of hands.

Floyd has 6 or 7 gray,
spit-curly, pubic hairs
growing on his
right palm.

“Guess I got hairy palms,”
he says when he forgets
to pluck ‘em.

The skin on his hand
was transplanted from
his groin area,
years back.

Floyd was carrying
2 full buckets of
hot tar across a roof,
tripped over some tools,
& fell with the buckets
into one boiling
tar pit puddle.

One roofer, Tony—
a gentle mountain—carried Floyd
down (what must’ve seemed
like Escher’s ladders at that
moment) the aluminum ladders
& drove him quickly to
the Emergency Room.

Floyd spent months in
the Clinic’s Burn Unit
getting his good skin stapled,
then pulled because of
oozing & leaking infections,
then gauzed & re-stapled:
a mummy’s nightmare.

He was used to drinking
a 12-pack a day & he started
having hallucinations from
the withdrawals &
the pain.
Floyd saw giant tarantulas
curled, waiting, in his
hospital room’s corner.

The Doctor allowed his
wife to bring in some
Pabst beer to help him

25-yrs later, after showing me
the pubes on his hand, he snatches
them w/ his thick, partially-bent fingers—
like those mechanical pincers in a
Big Grab novelty game,
mandible-clawing a prize—
& allows them to fall
onto the garage floor.

“They’re like weeds.
They’ll grow back.”