Kira Homsher "Your Fingers Tremble,

But Your Nails Are Pretty"

"You can feel it coming back, not that you mind. The need to bathe. The insistent urge to stand, dripping and thinning, on cold tiles. The compulsion to shiver before a mirror. If you hold your hand out beneath the sun, the width of each finger is roughly fifteen minutes closer to sundown. It helps to de-digitize time, to watch it literally slip between your fingers."

"An irregular heartbeat has been detected,

says the smart watch—and I wonder

if this is the last sentence I’ll ever read,"

"I learn how to say mountain in three different languages in

her voice. I taste the syntaxes of these words on my tongue.

I dream of an abode of snow, of shelter, a resurrection for

tired feet."

"Pagnucci used to ask me, 'What kind of trees are growing in your yard?' I never had a straight answer and he’d say, 'You got to know,' or something like that. He’d take our classes to wooded areas or next to the stream we had on campus and we’d write right there.  Much later, when I went back to my undergrad to work as an adjunct, he asked me if I remembered his asking me about the trees. He said, 'You had to know about the world around you,' or something like that. 'You had to be observant.'"

"children for security in old age,

pride for solace,

work for love,

silence for apology."

"My father, undaunted, as my father was about everything in life, hiked up the hill behind the house, past detached garage, snow-covered roof, made a serpentine through the apple orchard, marched back down the hill to the main road where no cars were ambling by that early on Christmas."

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