The Courage to be Barefoot

Standing five foot eight with no fabric to cover an inch of her body and she’s comfortable
Feels at peace with herself when she is barefoot
Nothing to interfere with the connection between earth and the bottom of her sole
Toes happily planted in soil
Heels strong enough to walk up and down country back roads heavily strewn with stone
And she would be known to walk into the fields and back home…Naked
Would sit amongst the wheat grass and honeysuckle bushes and meditate
As kinky chocolate spirals of hair would spill down her back just as slowly as viscous molasses moves from the jar
Knees pressed up against her breasts
Hands cupping the bottom of her feet
She breathes as the wind does
And I envy her free spirit

Sneakers confine my soul to the small space in which they would inherit
Discomfort makes itself apparent as it manifests itself in my crooked stride
Constantly looking down at my feet to apologize
I wish I had the courage to take my shoes off

Though there was a slight sentiment that keeps me tied down
Remembering every stain
Every scuff and mud puddle that was born from every rain
The little scratches across grey mesh blended canvas
Living through rubber burning circumstances
I loved you just as intricately as every bleached white lace was weaved out and in
Yet hated you like that fall off my bike when I was ten and the black flicks of paint that remained from the time I kicked in the side door of your Benz
In a sense these shoes have become my bitter friend

I have worn out all the traction
Bottoms look more like mountain plateaus than the rigid honeycomb designs meant for anti-slip
Possibly the reason why I have fallen so many times
Got right back up just to jog on past the same damn warning signs that would point me to avoid my next slip
And how could I expect myself to get a grip…if I have worn out all my traction

These shoes were my personal tactic to coping
An excuse to keep holding on to avoid the grievance and the moping
I was finally going to let go
I finally decided to take that walk
So that the next time I passed an open field …
I’d have the courage to take my shoes off

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