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Poem: Shoes

Books & Poetry

Discarded shoes take on special significance in this week’s Poet’s Corner contribution from Emilia Leonetti.

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Shoes

Yesterday
When lazy clouds drifted on high
When sunrays punctured a tired sky
I said goodbye.

Yesterday
I planned to close your door
Pick your shoes off the floor
No second try.

Yesterday
I had a brillo pad
Ready to scrub all the dirt and scruff
Your old Doc Martens had.

Yesterday
You closed the door.
Your shoes were strewn
Across the floor.

You said you’d always wash them,
You always said ‘next month’,
Like you were prey in lamplights
And I was on the hunt.

I’d always sigh and grit my teeth,
I’d always fold my arms
I’d always be the UV light
To your superficial charms.

Who knows I’d put angels in strangleholds
Fight time with my bare hands
To make you see
I’m not your enemy
I’m not made of demands.

My arms are left unfolded.
My hands are callous and bare
From all the times they’ve touched my face
Now I know you’re not there…

Yet I will never wash those awful shoes
You always used to wear.

Emilia Leonetti, born in Sydney, is a 24-year-old poet and writer living in Tasmania’s Huon Valley. Writing since the age of 10, she has been published on the American feminist blog ‘The Identity of She’ and the Irish literary journal ‘The Blue Nib’, and was also a finalist in the Huon Valley 2017 Mid-Winter Festival Storytelling Cup.

Readers’ original and unpublished poems of up to 40 lines can be emailed, with postal address, to poetscorner@solsticemedia.com.au. Submissions should be in the body of the email, not as attachments. A poetry book will be awarded to each accepted contributor.

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