The particular roughened tenderness that comes when you’ve picked up your guitar a handful of times in the last couple of weeks:
The hint of calluses, the pressure, like the tightness of new ice skates snugly laced. And the return to familiar mudras: C, G, A, D, Em.
The feeling of a chain dropping down and down through decades: this is the guitar you got from that first serious boyfriend, the luthier, who rescued it from a basement and repaired it himself.
This is the guitar you used for lessons– so you’d stop being so impressed by and then dating musicians– and it worked.
This is the guitar, and these are the fingers that stopped writing poetry and started writing songs.
Hold this curved, small body and you return to the summer of the pixie cut when you were the most qualified counselor at summer camp to accompany the nightly sing-alongs: D G A D! Nothing with bar chords!
All those moments live in the fingertips, the close hug of old wood to ribs.
Everything returns anew, and everything starts again.