Ugly Shoes


I was recently challenged by Cindy Hutchins to write a poem on the subject of Ugly Shoes. This is my effort. Further down the page is Cindy's reply. I think hers is more profound than mine so I consider that she won on this occasion.

The right,
He somehow understood,
Bright, black, summertime and beetling,
Would always take him home
Sliding along wet grass
Gravelled pathways
Leading nowhere in particular
Except away

Wintered, as now,
Easily traceable,
One slide, one step,
The left heaving snow,
A great bow wave of resistance,
A tight, glazed and scuffed
Spermaceti built fully
Three inches above the right
Filled with precious oil,

A lopsided anchor,
An Ahabís hole
In a street quarterdeck
A Pequod pivot without which
He would list,
A stoved boat,
Filling slowly with
Poured scorn,
A Queequeg,
Seeming savage,
Harpoon sheathed long ago
When the other boys
Ran away


UGLY SHOES   by Cindy Hutchins


When I was younger, I wore beautiful shoes
There were stilettos,
And open toes beauties.
All heads turned.
They made me feel beautiful.
I loved those shoes.
But just today,
I was looking at my shoes.
Tennis Shoes,
Ugly shoes.
Holes in the toes,
Black scuff marks
Bad smell,
And I smiled,
Because what they reminded me of
Was wearing them as I was running through the grass with you
and being your mommy.