Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
Needle Through Leather


he could pull a needle through leather,
heal a shoe seam; reattach a purse strap

when I see a hole now, I think
he could fix that

with his ocular magnifier
squeezed into his eye socket

what’s one more wrinkle
when his skin has already been given

over to the Greek sun,
the open field?

his fingertips were blunt, tough
wasp squashed under his thumb

but when I see him back at the kitchen table
winding the wire coil necklace

first fashioned by him
before the war and the loss and the flight

with its many consequent whorls,
I want to wear it, at least for a while
before it cracks again

see his wizened hands are sure,
as they twist and curl the wire thread,
double back over turns they’ve made

and he returns it to me, whole again

Vasiliki Katsarou’s poems have appeared in Poetry Daily, Agave Magazine, Regime Journal (Australia), wicked alice, Wild River Review, here/there: poetry, and The Curator, as well as in the anthologies Not Somewhere Else But Here: A Contemporary Anthology of Women and Place and Rabbit Ears: TV Poems (NYQ Books). Her first collection of poems, Memento Tsunami, was published in 2011 by Ragged Sky Press. In 2014, Vasiliki was one of 70 poets performing work at the Dodge Poetry Festival, the largest poetry festival in the United States. She lives in Hunterdon County, NJ, with her husband and son, and a dachshund named Melville.

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A lovingly crafted tribute, Katsarou's poem exemplifies her father's dexterity and rich heritage.
That's just beautiful
Even though my father wasn't good at fixing things, I identify with this poem. The details show me a picture and the emotion of the poem shines through. Good poem!
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