Sunday, May 11, 2008

Speaking of the Shoe Muse

here is a poem I wrote in my Wednesday writing class. Susan read it aloud during class and I kind of liked it. Here it is:

You don’t know what came over you
when you saw those sparkling red pumps--
Candy-apple red, three inch spiked heels,
shinier than the ruby slippers,
narrower than a ballet shoe.

A deep longing sprang up from somewhere
you could not remember.
Your size 11 feet always gave you
lessons in humility, never grace.

The desire ran so deep and so thick
that now your dreams are filled with red shoes,
And the muse whispers “shoes”
on her weekend nights off.

Imagine, as I know you will,
picking up prescriptions and
dropping off dry cleaning, and you suddenly
see something shine in a store window
and remember what you cannot have:

The taut muscular stomach of a pretty boy you once knew
The feel of a baby sucking at your breast
The ability to dance high on tip-toe,
a slender hipbone jutting out
above the waistband of your jeans

All your longing seems focused on lightness
On being no denser than a piece of fine silk
On floating somehow, impossibly, on a cloud
or being dangled by fine wires as you pretend to
fly across a stage on extended calf muscles.
All your longing points you at smallness,
Points you at bright high heeled sparkly shoes
That all size sevens wear.


Anonymous said...

This wonderful poem illuminates why "shoes" is listed as one of your dislikes in your profile! Why does longing for a different (read better) physical incarnation drain away so much of women's energy in useless and self-destructive wistfulness?

Signed, a fellow size 11 (post kids)

Steph said...

I love this poem! And the magic that happened during class still gives me goose bumps!

sweetcakes said...

Beautiful! I wish you had a picture of the shoes that were given with the poem.