December 12, 2006

De Zengotita gives this lovely description of his grandfather’s (a surgeon) delight in things: “it was his hands that I remember most of all, the care they extended to everything he touched, one by one, no haste, no waste, to each its due. That much was obvious. But subtler internal qualities made for beauty in even the simplest actions. Before using things, he took time to assess them. Just for a second, when he was buttering bread; more intently, when the task was less routine. His eyes supervised, but it was his hands upon which he most relied - constantly gauging and accommodating, hefting, balancing, fingering for edge, flexibility, fit. He never held anything too tightly, but nothing ever slipped his grasp. And he loved to prepare - to unwrap, to lubricate, to sharpen. To lay everything out. When at last he executed a task, the outcome followed from the preparation like a denoument. And he attended just as respectfully to cleaning up, to returning and replacing.”

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