My hands hurt.
Anxiety presses pins, needles, nails
Into my knuckles
The pads of my fingers
And my thumb.
“Don’t press so hard.
It’s bound to hurt,” they say, “gripping like that,”
but then they add
“You have half an hour to finish,” and wonder
Why I stress so.
The words are easy.
If I could type them on a keyboard,
Neat and bright
In a well presented paper, I could have ended this
An hour ago.
“You don’t complain
When it’s maths,” they say sadly, but
Maths is beautiful
And I can ignore the pain to get
Those numbers formed.
Meanwhile, they want
Three sentences that explain some words
I have understood
For ever and a day, and you must understand
My hand is numb.
(I was writing to a prompt: “If I waited till I felt like writing, I’d never write at all!” and was inspired by my autistic grandson who finds handwriting a trial.)