On the Invention of Shoes
I would like to shake the hand of the first person
Who shod the foot for protection against stones
And barbs, the snow, the heat of the ground, etc...
I think of the sandals of the legions and the importance of cobblers
When walking was the major form of transportation, and of the feet
Of thousands of pilgrims along the trails to Campostella.
And of our friend’s shelf along the wall just above the floor
Where he kept the ones he favored. He was a manly person
And they were oxfords and brogues and boots.
I walked around the city many times but found not
But what I sought among the processions:
What good fortune it is to live in an age of great shoes.
Innovators of sole and insole, lace and eyelet,
Vamp and upper, welt and medial, heel and tongue,
Sing to me of the open road!