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Welcome to the dVerse Poets bar from your host for today, Kim of Writing in North Norfolk.

It’s the end of August and next week children across the British Isles will be returning to school, spruced up in pristine uniforms and shiny new shoes, which prompted me to search for poetry about footwear by well-known poets. I could only find a few, including this wonderful shape poem by Shel Silverstein:

A Closet full of Shoes by Shel Silverstein

The poems I have found take shoes and transform them into something else, exploring a variety of fotwear in different ways.

‘Red Slippers’ by Amy Lowell is a wonderful example of imagist poetry that focuses on the shoe as an object of desire, making the red slippers other-worldly:  https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/red-slippers

In ‘My Shoes’ by Charles Simic, the shoe is secret face of your inner life. Worn  everyday, shoes become part of you; they go with you, take you places, know your every move, where you’re going and where you’ve been: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/42948/my-shoes

‘The Broken Sandal’ by Denise Levertov is a meditation on life: https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/broken-sandal

A particular favourite of mine is ‘New Shoes’ by Honor Moore, a sensual poem: https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/new-shoes

What I would like you to do is focus on shoes: they may be in a shop window or on feet, your own or somebody else’s. If they are in a shop window, think about who might buy them. If they are on somebody’s feet, look at how well they fit. Are they clean or muddy? Look at the colour and texture. What are they made of?

Allow your imagination to take flight; for example, do the shoes have magical properties or are they able to loosen their tongues and talk? What would they say?

Think about the person wearing the shoes. How do they walk? Where are they going? What do they want and what’s stopping them from getting it?

The challenge is to write a poem, of any length or form, about footwear: stilettos, Wellington boots, hobnail boots, sandals, slippers, ballet shoes – it’s up to you, just as long as the poem is new.

If you are new to dVerse, here’s how to join in:

  • Write a poem in response to the challenge;
  • Enter a link directly to your poem and your name by clicking Mr Linky below;
  • There you will find links to other poets, and more will join so check back to see more poems;
  • Read and comment on other poet’s work, we all come here to have our poems read;
  • Please link back to dVerse from your site/blog;
  • Comment and participate in our discussion below, if you like.  We are a friendly bunch of poets.
  • Have fun.

I look forward to stepping into your shoes.