When Again I Feel My Hands

When Again I Feel My Hands

My wooden hands
hang idle on the strings.
Master’s drunk on Holland gin
& sleeps beside the wench
who takes my place.

Half human, half wood,
in a world deprived of joy,
I am the fool’s scepter,
a reprieve from tedium,
my simple plays enhanced
by classical compositions.
You cannot know how dear
the price of mirth.

With his dark eyes, he wooed me
& with his magic, he prevailed.
Father swore, mother wept
as he swept me in his arms
& then away to foreign lands.

Soon he’ll tire of her,
& cast a spell to change her form
as did he mine, to suit his needs.
She’ll bob & bow as I do now,
and he will set me free–
or so he promised, long ago.

When again I feel my hands,
I’ll rip away these strings
& as he sleeps, I’ll pull them taut
around his bearded throat,
claim his magic for my own.

-Marge Simon