Wednesday 14 February 2018

My life in shoes by Sheila Ash

At first there were a pair of handmade crocheted bootees
Surpassed, for the photographer hired to capture my christening, by white round toed Mary Jane’s.
At 5 I was in red leather Clarks Joyance ‘school’ sandals, T barred with a pattern of holes
At 11 I chose white leather moccasins with 1in rubber heels.

My very own ballet shoes replaced the shared black canvas gym pump pile that fell out of primary school cupboards
A pair of flaming flamenco red dance shoes with Tone King taps brought colour to my cheeks
The elegance of strappy sparkling gold “Strictly” ballroom heels to spin in.
But the true pleasure was playing out in the wet and mud in Wellington boots.

Disco nights in Mod white leather knee high Go-Go boots
mock AndrĂ© Courreges, no ‘Pretty Woman’ Cuissarde over the knee boots for me,
No Dr Martens either, instead the black and white canvass
of American baseball boots and sneakers.

I klomped around in wooden Scholl’s
Craving the comfort of my Birkenstocks skin
Beachcombing in my jelly shoes
Slipping lately into Oakley ‘jangles’ to flip flop my way bravely to bare feet.

I loitered in Loafers, ran in Desert boots and Reebok Pumps
Proudly polished my Charles Jourdan brogues.
I suffered wide fit Van Dal’s for work – a token gesture to office conformity
Preferring my riding boots, their Cuban heels, my Moon boots in the snow.

Today I live in a rainbow of Merrells
Boots, shoes and sandals
Comfort from first to last
slipper of my evening.

© Sheila Ash, 2018

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