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Ode To A Leg – or – Dear Surgeon General (you mean minister of
health and wellness – either, no any, one will do)
Poem by Anne Sorbie
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Ode To A Leg – or – Dear Surgeon General (you mean minister of
health and wellness – either, no any, one will do)
Poem by Anne Sorbie

(page 54 of 93)

Keywords: eleventh transmission, poetry, fiction, photography, visual art, spoken word, film, socially engaged,
political, human experience, writing, satire, photojournalism, activist art, activism, socially conscious, art

Ode To A Leg – or – Dear Surgeon General (you mean minister of
health and wellness – either, no any, one will do)

by Anne Sorbie

Can one –
one being you –
write an ode to a leg?
After all, a leg is not an urn!

Or is it?
Is a leg an historic vessel?
It carries, yes -  more than sundries –
that which weighs.

Can it be examined in perpetuity?
And – can its examiners document
the wonders of its deconstructing state?
Its construction and structure?

Will the skin matter?
Its fairness, freckling, its downy covering?
Will the readers of anatomy slice the epidermis and dive
Into its musculo-skeletal wreck and repair the damage?

Theses are questions to be answered by practising experts: magnetic
resolution imaging in shades of gray of the hip and ham, signal
significant edema, and of the strings, complete avulsion.
Semimembranosus and semitendinosus share an attachment in
common, yet ripped they are from whence they endear to be enjoined.
Stripped from the ischial tuberosity along with the shiny surface they
love – possibly a fracture, not simply a ruptured entanglement.

But. Until he reads the results the practitioner hesitates: there may be,
he thinks, a string of remaining attachment. Perhaps the third wheel is
hanging on by a thread.
No need for deeper examination, the
practitioner says.
Into the Alberta Health Care line with the leg. It is
after all an appendage of a middle-aged entity, and there is a chance,
perhaps, that the lost couple will reach up toward the bone stripped
and overcome the gap. And if not, she of middle and ageing doesn’t
need – really – to have her hams re-strung. You don’t need to sprint,
do you?

Now the practitioner must take care
because his observations are hardly conclusions
of the kind that an article, even medical
can today put to print.

So once more into the fray
perhaps the practitioner might – no – must go
review the image, the wreckage,
the dirty details that smell of bad rubber.

NO, you scream – NO, this won’t do!
Triage the lovely leg!
Beware the ripped and ruptured, the middle and ageing is
attached to the appendage – and pained!

She lobbies ball after ball, day after day, and none are returned – save
one from a notable surgeon who said and I quote:
shouldn’t have to go south for repairs
. But still she waits. So the middle
and ageing increases the pressure.

There are dollars a plenty in the coffers conservative guarded.
Squeeze the leg in! It’s small!
Attached to a small woman
who does love to run – perhaps five times a week –

Wait! She’s healthy? The practitioner asks. Into the line with her leg
she must go! She’s strong – and the leg – it has a partner (the left) to
see her through! Someday there will be a prize for she’s with healthy
gams. But not now! Not today! Into the penalty box with that one and
her you and her fairly wrecked leg!

Take care overwrought practitioner.
For the one being me
and my leg do carry, yes
a pen and a few pages

on which
a pound or two of flesh
must be measured, compared by ducats
as if by a Merchant of Venice.

Please Surgeon General. Is her only option submersion of the on fire
limb in the frigid Bow? Or should she advertise in
The Globe for a
distant surgeon and put her life leg and limb on a plane out of

So you will appeal on behalf of
all legs
to the general of surgeons
who surely can judge
the true weight of your limb

and its worthiness for repair
and its support
of the pelvis and hip
and the girth

of this small and middling woman
who dreams through your pain
of a long winding river
and its hard, hard path

that leads all the way back
to the mirror of the lake.

Poetry by Ace Boggess.
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