by Cynthia Rylant

Cynthia Rylant

When he finally died, they kept
them around the house
the longest time,
tripping on them,
arranging them beneath the beds,
occasionally borrowing them
in bad weather.
Then the preacher told them
it was a sacrilege to the dead,
moving those shoes around
like a couple of mop buckets.
So they left them out at the cemetery one day,
and of course the shoes promptly disappeared.
It was impossible for them, after that,
to keep from looking down at the feet of every
person who crossed their path.
And this would have gone on probably forever
had not one of his hats
turned up
way in the back of the closet.

Last updated July 26, 2022