My Hands are Torn



My hands are torn
by baling twine, not nails, and my side is pierced
by my ulcer, not a lance.
~Hayden Carruth from “Emergency Haying”


Miles of twine bind up
tons of hay inside our barn,
daily loosed free of grasses
to feed the hungry,
the strings saved to bind again
in myriad ways:

tightening a sagging fence
replacing a broken bucket handle
snugging a horse blanket belt.

It has become the duct tape of the barn
when duct tape isn’t enough;
a binding substitute made beautiful
by morning fog’s weeping.


Blest be the tie that binds
Our hearts in Christian love;
The fellowship of kindred minds
Is like to that above.

Before our Father’s throne,
We pour our ardent prayers;
Our fears, our hopes, our aims are one,
Our comforts, and our cares.

We share our mutual woes,
Our mutual burdens bear;
And often for each other flows
The sympathizing tear.

When we asunder part,
It gives us inward pain;
But we shall still be joined in heart,
And hope to meet again.
~John Fawcett



4 thoughts on “My Hands are Torn

  1. Ah yes–grinning! All that unloosed orange binder twine appearing all over our little farm, tying all kinds of things together–including the latch on the gate keeping our little Arab filly safe in her paddock. Otherwise her facile lips can flip the “real” latch up, pull it out of its slot and set herself free.


  2. John Fawcett describes beautifully the essence of what a Christian community of believers
    was intended to be — should be. We have fallen far short of that ideal I think. I see all around me internecine discord and hypocrisy that is tearing the Body apart and giving a shameful, distorted witness to the world — the world in which WE are supposed to shine our light, be a healing influence, and make a difference. We have the words of Jesus, the Incarnate God, that tell us what we need to do but those words – that ‘road map,’ so to speak is being drowned out by mass consumerism, greed, indifference to each other’s sufferings and needs.

    Lord, help us to ‘see’ each other with the eyes of Jesus.


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