Bio Note: I live in Amish country in Pennsylvania USA across the street from an Amish farm, where work horses pull plows and retired racehorses pull carriages. In retirement, I dedicate myself to my writing. Current work appears in Failed Haiku, Halcyon Days and Halibut. Poetry website link is above.
Beginning with a line from The Theory of Hats by David Biespiel It’s hard to admit this theory about shoes, just as it’s hard to walk in another’s. The old smelly kind are the worst, no one would want mine. Not the broken down black sneaks. Or sloppy slip-ons, worn in kindness to a bunion. Or the stretched leather fleece lined slippers, a hole worn through the sole for aeration. A pity what’s pretty isn’t pedestrian friendly. What’s fancy seldom matches what’s practical, practical’s a poor companion for a gown or dress. Few older women tolerate the tight pinch of dress shoes, of high heels or stilettos shooting rounds of pain. It has to do what hides in the dark of an oldster’s shoes. Feet grow wider, fatter, swell, sag, go flat, get numb, catch fungus. Heel cushion and skin thins, dries, cracks, toenails grow thick, brittle, discolor. They feel the cold and shuffle. Phyllis Diller looked at mine and joked, “You know you’re old when someone compliments your alligator shoes and you are barefoot.” The next time you see old feet shod in running shoes at a wedding, the mall or supermarket, it could be for gait, balance, shock absorption, for cushion, stability and arch support and a grand hope to trek another 45,000 miles if graced with fifty more years.
©2020 Ingrid Bruck
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