by Kristina McDonald
I always hated shoes and the way they devoured my feet like snakes trying to swallow mice. Washing the floor was a relief because no one saw or cared if my toes clawed at the air or drew doodles in the soap. I don't know why someone would make shoes out of glass, as if my feet were roses and not calloused covered tubers I rarely had time to wash. I just know those damn shoes were heavy. They made a sound like a train wheel turning over and they whistled when I slipped on your ridiculously polished floor. And you, with your perfectly circular buttons, the golden fringe on your shoulder and the face someone else scrubbed clean in the mornings, you turned and assumed I would fall. So I'm writing today to remind you that I didn't stumble on my way out the door. I meant for you to find the glass, to polish it until you saw your eyes were empty too. And I kept the other shoe so I could fill it with dirt and fail at growing a flower. Because a single slipper has no purpose, and it reminds me of you.
Kristina McDonald received her MFA from Eastern Washington University, where she was the poetry editor of Willow Springs. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Narrative, New Guard Review, Yemassee, Sugar House Review, and Sixfold. She has worked for literary non-profits Writers in the Schools and Get Lit! Programs, and she currently works for Rice University.
When asked to name her favourite fruit, she replied as follows: "My favorite fruit is chocolate-covered pineapples. Or chocolate-covered cherries. Or chocolate-coated strawberries on a stick at the Renaissance Fair. Really, any fruit you can cover in chocolate is the best kind of fruit."
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