Trigger Finger

You try to flex your thumb, make a circle
with your index finger, but it doesn’t

listen. Everything works on the left, but
something is stuck on the right. The hand

doctor pulls out a diagram describing
the arrangement of tendons: like

passenger cars on a train. Pulleys
allow for the ease with which they

can glide forward and back on the tracks.
Something is stuck in your thumb’s pulley

system, causing pain that radiates
from the hinge and tenderness at the base.

It hasn’t gone away, despite the different
kinds of salves friends have recommended.

When you hold a pen, your grip is awkward;
and marking student papers or signing

your name is like pushing an iron bar through
dry soil. And that train? It wants so badly

to leave the station, to climb up those hills.
Perhaps a masked man is holding the engineer

hostage, forefinger resting on the trigger.
What he wants exactly, no one can figure out.

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