Hopscotch Annie

Annie resides to the right, 
below the last rib,
a carefully crafted fort
tucked under my diaphragm, 
gall bladder just beneath.  

She peeks between the folds
glimpsing toward the
fleshy foundation that keeps her
from tumbling into the organelle abyss. 

Annie’s always afraid, molding nervy clumps from
her tangled fears, then lobs them high
toward the gray sky, her worried masses land squarely
within my neuron weave – and she celebrates.  

She will be heard today. 
Without a tantrum-tesseract elevatored
to the misconstrued mainframe 
or rocks ricocheted off my aortic valve. 

I say, “I’m here, what do you want to say, Annie?”

Annie sits crisscross applesauce on
my pelvic floor, etching her initials into pubic bone.  
She picks at a scab, and whispers, “I’m nervous.” 

I say, “I promise, 
I know what I am doing, and I thank you for being cautious.
You help me.” 

A string appears, tied to her finger, a bobbing balloon above
inflated and lofty with compassion.  
Annie stops engraving;
hopscotches across my iliac crest, 
realizing it’s high time to find a new game. 

By Tara E. Sturgill, ©2021
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