Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
Working Hands

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The work of my hands
is not the writing.

To write out of
is not to do, again and again, the tasks of life,
my fingers wet, soap, wet, dry, wet, soap, wet. Dry.

And now, to write
out the baby lotion gathered under my nails. I'm getting good
at balling up the diapers. First I roll it (the diaper) into itself and then
I take the first sticky tab around and then the second around the other way. Now it's a compact ball. Throw it out

of my head. My head, into the garbage, my fingers
push the hair out of your eyes.
You are sleeping but, I thought, to do it.

Jessica Restaino is Assistant Professor of English at Montclair State University. Her areas of scholarly interest include composition and rhetorical theory, teacher preparation, service-learning, and the political theory of Hannah Arendt. Recent publications (scholarship and poetry) can be found in Academic Exchange Quarterly, Reflections: A Journal of Writing, Service-Learning, and Community Literacy (forthcoming), and The Arabesques Review. She is the proud mother of Abigail, age 2.

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