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    Erica Jong - Ode To My Shoes


    by poetictouch

    Erica Jong reads her poem Ode To My Shoes

    Ode To My Shoes
    (After Neruda, who left us his socks)
    by Erica Jong (1942-)

    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,
    her diamond-studded boots,
    her feathered cowboy boots,
    her seven-league epic poetry boots,
    her little silver haiku boots,
    with tiny heels that twinkle,
    her first-person platform boots
    and her backless glass slippers
    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
    for posterity,
    her daughter's burning Reeboks,
    her lover's laceless sneakers
    left in the guest room closet
    for her to kiss
    year after year
    after year.

    Darling shoes,
    beloved feet
    ten toes to walk me
    toward my true love,
    fuck-me pumps to fuel his passion
    stiletto heels to stab him
    if 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.