Saturday, March 1, 2014

Those invisible hands

during the job interview,
he was asked to clean his mother's hands
and come back the next day-

so the young man came home
& requested to wash his mother's hands-

for the first time, he sees
her gnarled thick veins,

bruises & small knots wrinkling
palms from washing & rinsing clothes

day in & day out, water & detergent
scalding skin dry & paper thin

she winces with pain as his hands
smooth & fine, brush hers tenderly-

it dawned on him 
the sacrifices she, a widow had done to give him

good education, time to study & never to 
worry about chores & future, while she washes

and cleans clothes, bending her shoulders to task-
an invisible & tireless worker-

slowly the young man stands up
& washes the remaining clothes-

he makes a promise:
he will now carry her torch

& her hands-
                   her hands will be his guide- 

This is based on an inspirational story I read this morning: (You can skip this as its long, smiles)

One young man went to apply for a managerial position in a big company. He passed the initial interview, and now would meet the director for the final interview.

The director discovered from his CV that the youth's academic achievements were excellent. He asked, "Did you obtain any scholarships in school?" the youth answered "no".

" Was it your father who paid for your school fees?"

"My father passed away when I was one year old, it was my mother who paid for my school fees.” he replied.

" Where did your mother work?"

"My mother worked as clothes cleaner.”

The director requested the youth to show his hands. The youth showed a pair of hands that were smooth and perfect.

" Have you ever helped your mother wash the clothes before?"

"Never, my mother always wanted me to study and read more books. Besides, my mother can wash clothes faster than me.

The director said, "I have a request. When you go home today, go and clean your mother's hands, and then see me tomorrow morning.

The youth felt that his chance of landing the job was high. When he went back home, he asked his mother to let him clean her hands. His mother felt strange, happy but with mixed feelings, she showed her hands to her son.

The youth cleaned his mother's hands slowly. His tear fell as he did that. It was the first time he noticed that his mother's hands were so wrinkled, and there were so many bruises in her hands. Some bruises were so painful that his mother winced when he touched it.

This was the first time the youth realized that it was this pair of hands that washed the clothes everyday to enable him to pay the school fees. The bruises in the mother's hands were the price that the mother had to pay for his education, his school activities and his future.

After cleaning his mother hands, the youth quietly washed all the remaining clothes for his mother.

That night, mother and son talked for a very long time.

Next morning, the youth went to the director's office.

The Director noticed the tears in the youth's eyes, when he asked: "Can you tell me what have you done and learned yesterday in your house?"

The youth answered," I cleaned my mother's hand, and also finished cleaning all the remaining clothes'

“I know now what appreciation is. Without my mother, I would not be who I am today. By helping my mother, only now do I realize how difficult and tough it is to get something done on your own. And I have come to appreciate the importance and value of helping one’s family.

The director said, "This is what I am looking for in a manager. I want to recruit a person who can appreciate the help of others, a person who knows the sufferings of others to get things done, and a person who would not put money as his only goal in life.”

“You are hired.”

This young person worked very hard, and received the respect of his subordinates. Every employee worked diligently and worked as a team. The company's performance improved tremendously.

Posted for D'verse Poets Pub - Hosted by Mary - Part 2 -
Picture credit:   here


  1. wow...whoever was doing that interview nailed this guy...and also taught us all a very valuable lesson...humility/gratitude....appreciation of the sacrifices of our elders...i have a few students who could learn that.

    1. I say the Director is a very wise man ~ Sometimes we take for granted the sacrifices of our parents, never appreciating them until we become parents ourselves or someone telling us to appreciate them ~

      Thanks for reading this long story, smiles ~

  2. what amazing story and poem!! I always think in all we make with our hands and are a blessing, cook, bake, wash clothes,, care the kids and many,many things, that is lovely Grace!!

    1. The tireless hands of the mother, always cooking & caring for the kids ~

      Thanks for reading Gloria ~

  3. Incredible story! You made it into a most inspiring poem.

    1. I was very moved by this story this morning ~ Thanks Gabriella ~

  4. This is very moving, Grace. I think if some 'young' would be asked to wash their mother's hands and really look at them they would be struck by all that their mother's hands have accomplished and have a deeper appreciation of just who their mother was. The story that you shared was very moving. The director appreciated good qualities; and obviously the young man appreciated them.

    1. I think some of us have never really looked at our mother's hands ~ I am happy you liked this story Mary ~ It is indeed very moving ~

  5. This is a fantastic story - and a wise executive........I love that the boy realized the sacrifices his mother had made - many kids never do. This tells a wonderful story, both the poem and the item that inspired it. Thanks so much!

    1. Thanks Sherry ~ Appreciate your visits ~

  6. This is a great story but if it is true would be a rare one. A director does no have the sensitivity or innate intelligence to think like this normally They are just not that smart!

  7. That interviewer is top notch wow, really showed him something and got a great manager out of it too

    1. Thanks Pat ~ Valuable lessons they are too ~

  8. I couldn't bear to skip the story after reading your poem - but in fact you have given us the essence in beautiful, tender detail. Thank you.

    1. Thank you for the lovely comments, smiles ~

  9. I like the way you reframe the story and focus on her hands.

  10. paper thin hands...such a beautiful image and so many stories those hands have held through the years. gratitude...

  11. What a story.. I only wish there were more managers like that.. Wow.

  12. This made me other words need being said. Thank you Grace .

  13. Very moving. Have a good week, Grace ~

  14. this hit home for me, Graces. i was very close to my mamasita. used to make her coffee and rub her feet when she'd get home from work. she used to work two sometimes two and a half jobs all her life. this to keep initially, eight, children fed and clothed. fathered had abandoned her and us. now that she's passed i think of her every day and tear up looking at her picture always hoping that she knew how much i loved her for being the caregiver that she was. it was her swollen feet in lieu of hands that you speak of in this lovely piece. gracias mi amiga

    1. Your mamasita is an inspiration, yours being a real life testimony that love can change and move the world ~ Thanks for sharing ~

  15. I love that he was able to see the sacrifices she had made for him in her hands. What a wonderful moral to learn here. What a valuable lesson that this director taught him! Wow.

  16. Oh! That was heart touching. What all our parents do for us... Beautiful lesson and tenderly written. :-)

  17. wow. I'm honestly at a loss of words right now, so I'll just stick with "wow."

  18. a brilliant life lesson for all us all.

  19. Thank you for sharing the poem, and the story that inspired it. Well done!

    It reminds me of so many times hearing stories about hands and work, and the reminders of our work that remain on our hands.

  20. This is beautiful ... really really beautiful :-)


Thank you for your comments and visit. I appreciate them ~