Ode to My Shoes by Erica Jong

July 4, 2011 at 4:17 am (Styling)

Ode to My Shoes
(After Neruda, who left us his

The poet alone
is writing an ode
to her shoes–
her shoes which
only she can fill,
her shoes of
purple suede and green leather
the color of palm fronds,
diamond-studded boots,
her feathered cowboy boots,
her seven-league epic
poetry boots,
her little silver haiku boots,
with tiny heels that
her first-person platform boots
and her backless glass
modelled after Cinderella’s
(one lost, at midnight,
because of
a running man),
her huntress boots of India-rubber,
her lover’s boots
joined at the ankle
like leg irons,
her pink baby booties bronzed
her daughter’s burning Reeboks,
her lover’s laceless
left in the guest room closet
for her to kiss
year after
after year.

Darling shoes,
beloved feet
ten toes to walk me
toward my true
*****-me pumps to fuel his passion
stiletto heels to stab him
he strays.

Shoes tell you everything.
Shoes speak my language.
Their tap tap tap
on the airport runway
tells me the story
of a lovely, lonely woman flying
after love–
That old, old story
in a new pair
of shoes.


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