March 2017

Back to Issue 1

The Shoes

By B.R. Dionysius

for Wayne Allston


I was fatherless, but so I think were you.

If I could somehow lace the past back up,

I would have let you keep my black school

shoes you flogged in PE. I didn’t realise you

were wintering barefoot, trudging to school

for you daily dose of being frozen out. Pencils

borrowed never returned. Pigsey told me this.

How I resisted my meekness & tackled you,

stripping my shoes off your feet as though your

clothes were burning. Only shame ignites now,

thirty-four years later, the heat you must have felt

when I ripped them off. My nikoed name fading.

In Turvey’s system we were equally maths dumb.

Out of all the class, we were always left standing.