There is a man holding out his hands like the extended branches of a grand oak tree

He has worn and weathered hands

Wise hands

The kind of hands you can trust

Hands that were meant for holding

Although there is power in his fingers as they spread like the wings of an eagle

And I can tell these hands were meant for giving, not for taking

In the sunlight his hands become paper- thin leaves, revealing the roots of a family tree

This is a man who had mastered the art of reckless love

Carefree hands, hands that were meant to run wild

Someone who gave his heart away before it was acceptable

Hands that were before their time

This is a man who had proven his unyielding love everyday of his life

Nurturing hands that raised a family

He was a man who took great pride in his family but his wife was the real light of his life

Hands that had found the answer to every question they were searching for

Hands that didn’t have enough time


This man now sits in an assisted living community

Dementia has robbed him of his last memories of having a family

Whenever questions of his life are asked, the man has no answers now

Except to hold his hands out and whisper,

“I know I did great things with these hands. I can just tell.”

The man in the poem turned out to gain the family he always wanted, only to have it snatched away from him in the midst of his disease. You would never have know by looking at this seemingly crazed man the love he shared in his lifetime. Therefore, you can never really understand the depths of someones pain dealing with a disease like dementia. In the end all we have is perspective. Katherine Garcia.