Knotted Hands

My grandfather planted this tree with roots poisoned after the war.
His father watered it, the seed which came before.
My father nurtured them, these roots of ruined fiber.
This tree grew ever higher.
Its fruit, rotting, my mother prepared for me.
She sweetened it, tried to soothe it down,
Nothing could disguise the smell of these roots rotting in the ground.
It falls to me, as this tree must be fed;
A living sacrifice of a life never lead.
I toss my children as far as I can;
Mutter the same empty words my mother offered
Over knotted hands.

PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

Word Count: 100

A write for
Friday Fictioneers, roped in by Rochelle Wisoff Fields. I also think it’s Sunday (though I am not 100% sure). I’ve been writing my research proposal/thesis. I’m afraid I’m not good for much else right now.

Click the blue froggy to read more!

9 responses to “Knotted Hands”

  1. I love the poetic format and flow of this piece. Very thought provoking.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This was beautifully done, Kelley.
    Those “inheritances” must be broken…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! Yes, they need to be.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. This is haunting. I won’t pretend to understand what’s going on, because I’m not sure I understand how a great- grandfather can nurture something that was planted by his son before, unless there’s a progression that I’m not picking up on. (which wouldn’t be surprising and that’s on me 🙂 )

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! The grandfather planted a tree that already had roots which sprouted from a seed watered by the great grandfather, if that makes sense. The father nurtured it more and so it passes on through the generations. The poem/story is about abuses in general, be it something like alcoholism (which is what I had in mind when writing) or physical abuse.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ah. Yes, alcoholism unfortunately can be inherited.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Kelley, I shared this on Facebook. It is very literary, poetic and profound.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, thank you! I appreciate it!


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