A metatarsal is any of the five long bones that make up the instep of the foot.

From the BioTech Dictionary at http://biotech.icmb.utexas.edu/. For further information see the BioTech homenode.

The bone in each toe closest to the foot

I broke my big toe when I was twenty-four
(drunk, wet floor)
a sliding, sobering, foot-first collision
with an adobe wall.

It swelled and purpled in hours,
but a week later
the only evidence of injury
was a yellow-black shadow.
“Still,” the osteopath
told me, in a voice like my father’s,
“such damage
never really heals.”

It is not a disablement,
but now and then,
I misstep,
a stabbing reminder of what
will always be broken.

I never told Dad:
at first, too embarrassed, then too late.

So now I step gingerly through
his absence until I hear Satchmo,
smell Glenfiddich,
see a polished fossil:
the perfect gift for Dad;
or, until, like today,
I want him to bark
“Pull yourself together, Miss” in that
creaking, cigarette-scrubbed
authoritarian voice.

I’ll never hear it again, though,
so I must grit my teeth,
limp for awhile,
stumble on.

Part of the Anatomy Project

Met`a*tar"sal (?), a. Anat.

Of or pertaining to the metatarsus.



A metatarsal bone.


© Webster 1913.

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