Ode to the opposable thumb

Michael Johansen
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As Michael Johansen is still recovering from a recent accident, he was not able to write his regular column this week and instead has produced the following verses.

He insists the unusual composition has nothing do with any pain­killers that may or may not have been prescribed to him by doctors over the past fortnight.

Also, in submitting this ode for the reading public’s pleasure, he would like to extend his heartfelt apologies to all true poets out there.

Oh thumb. Oh injured thumb.

Have we ever for granted taken thee?

Must you be bound in plaster for all to see,

How much your opposition means to me?

Oh thumb. Oh noble thumb.

From ground to trees you lift us high,

You build our cars, you make us fly,

Your works sustain from birth till we die.

Oh thumb. Oh brilliant thumb.

So thick you are, but delicate, too.

Without your grip, or measurement true,

No science create, no inspiration we renew.

Oh thumb. Oh useful thumb.

Our hands you make to be our tools,

You save our lives, you build our schools,

You help us separate wise men from fools.

Oh thumb. Oh brave thumb.

When we fall from high you take the blow,

To save the body above the elbow.

If pain foreseen would you stop? No. Oh, no.

Oh thumb. Oh bandaged thumb.

So hard you are, so stiff and white.

So itchy the skin around the blight.

No thing can you hold, no enemy fight.

Oh thumb. Oh useless thumb.

No work can I do, no letters send.

Is this a sign evolution’s at end,

When you take so long to heal and mend?

Oh thumb. Oh forgiving thumb.

Forget my words, those uttered in pain.

From memory wipe their bitter stain,

For I need you back in my life again.

Michael Johansen is a writer living in Labrador.

Geographic location: Labrador

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Recent comments

  • Polly Pickford
    January 29, 2011 - 13:28

    I'd give it a "thumbs up". Hope you are feeling better soon .