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  • Writer's pictureLiz Hudson

Gone Fishing

Today I remembered a man

with the biggest hands

and an outdoor tan.

Doing the crossword with

the blunt stub of a pencil;

turning over cards as he

taught me Patience

or making toast for Nana

first thing in the morning.

Strong hands that once

forced the grate off a drain

at the side of the road

to rescue the ducklings

that had fallen in.

I remember a man

with the gentlest hands

that could hold a fish

perfectly still

while he eased out the hook

and set it free.

Hands that would tuck me

under his arm for a nap

or to help read the paper.

I remember the cleverest hands.

Hands that showed me how to

cast candles from church wax

and always fixed broken things.

Fingers that occasionally

danced across the organ keys

and painstakingly made

tomatoes grow enormous

and passionflower vines cling

rampant above the garden gate.

Grandad had the warmest hands,

that would button me into my coat

and take me on adventures

to the swimming pool

or across the fields to the pond.

Kind hands that could make

paper bags of peppermints

appear out of nowhere.

Ever since I lost him

my hand has felt

just a little bit empty.

Except sometimes

when I am lucky enough to dream

of Grandad reaching for

his shoes and cap and fishing rod

and me.


I am not a poet but I'm enough of a writer to put words down when they come to me and not argue too hard with myself about it.

For you, Grandad. I hope I've done you justice.


Say hello to me on Instagram at @writer_nerd or learn a little more about about me here.

Cover image used with the permission of Leonard Hudson.


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