MY Shoes

This poem was inspired by a different poem I wrote while at the USHMM in Washington, DC. In the museum, there is a room with a pathway down the middle. On each side is a pile of shoes taken from people as they arrived at concentration camps. This was inspired by my journey through that room.

 

Shoes

 

At the top of the pile-

MY shoes.

Little black flats with little leather caps

On the toes. Just like mine.

 

They must have gleamed like stars at midnight

When she slipped them on her feet

In the store.

Mine did.

She must have twirled, a dancer with

Tip-toes extended, catching the light

In the mirror.

I did.

Their little leather tips must have twinkled

In the sun, wet with rain, black in night

On her journeys—

                             —til the last—

 

“Take off your pretty shoes, my dear;

Put them here, together, so they don’t get lost-

                                                                           -for later.”


My shoes feel strange on my feet.

 

 

~ Chani Grossman

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2 thoughts on “MY Shoes

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