One of the most precious feelings I know is the warmth of a ‘wrinkled old hand’ in mine. The reassuring squeeze that makes everything okay; that is the embodiment of empathy and true love.
When I was about five, I remember cuddling up to my mother in bed and holding her hand.
I love your wrinkles, I said, meaning it with all my heart.
Mother was only in her early forties then. She had lovely soft, warm skin and hardly a wrinkle then, or indeed ever in her long life.
I see now why she was rather taken aback by my remark. I think it made her feel very old but it’s her hands that I think of today, especially after reading this gem of a poem:
The Little Boy and the Old ManSaid the little boy, “Sometimes I drop my spoon.”Said the old man, “I do that too.”
The little boy whispered, “I wet my pants.”
“I do that too,” laughed the little old man.
Said the little boy, “I often cry.”
The old man nodded, “So do I.”
“But worst of all,” said the boy, “it seems
Grown-ups don’t pay attention to me.”
And he felt the warmth of a wrinkled old hand.
“I know what you mean,” said the little old man.(Shel Silverstein)