an ode to my hands nora taylor man repeller
Look at My Beautiful Fucking Hands

Elegant. Sophisticated. Velvety smooth. Shockingly large.

These are just a few ways my magnificent and truly exceptional hands have been described by others. I love my hands. Yes—I appreciate them for their functional capacity which, combined with my very long arms, often saves me from having to move from a spot where I’m sitting to pick up something I want. But today I’m celebrating them for their purely aesthetic value.

an ode to my hands nora taylor man repeller

My hands possess a grace, elegance, and refinement the rest of my body and personality do not. Do you know what it is like to be both inspired by and in constant competition with your own hauntingly lithe appendages? It is an exquisite agony. One that I wouldn’t trade for the world. While I can barely walk two steps without knocking something over, my hands can easily cover an octave on a Steinway, always poised to delight, dazzle, and tinkle the ivories with puckish grace. I stubbornly and unfairly hold them back with my inability to actually play the piano.

If my hands were ever finally set free from the rest of my body, as I know is their only wish, they would take the city by storm. They’d be on the board at Alvin Ailey. They’d discover new artists and quietly support them, not wanting to become a topic of discussion in the art scene themselves. They’d go to different tea shops for different types of loose leaf teas. They’d own and play a Djembe in a drumming circle in a park. They’d have a secret beach. They’d look good in hats.

They’re not perfect, which is part of what makes them so appealing. They seem perfect, but they’re flawed, just like the rest of us. Sometimes when my nails are long, which isn’t often since my nail beds are so large that manicures look striking even when my nails are short, dirt and debris gets caught under them. That’s it. That’s the one flaw.

an ode to my hands nora taylor man repeller

But my hands aren’t objects of exquisite, almost ideal form on their looks alone. They’re also so very soft. Once, my friend Molly grabbed my hand at a holiday party and was so taken aback by how delicate and richly silken my hands were (like a chocolate mousse, delicate yet decadent at the same time) she made everyone touch them. I like to think my hands reminded everyone about the spirit of the holiday season that night, the memory of my gossamer-spun skin warming them as they trudged home through the falling winter snow.

For all this, I’d like to thank my hands and, in turn, thank myself for being bold enough to share them with you all this afternoon. I hope you take as much joy and inspiration from them as I do, and when you are lost in this world, feel free to look to my delicate fingers, perfectly sized palms and exquisite nail beds to be a beacon in the dark.

*Dramatic wave goodbye*

Photos by Louisiana Mei Gelpi. Styled with Mondo Mondo rings; Nora wearing Essie nail polish in Watermelon.

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