Sunday, December 5, 2010

Walking without shoes

Walking without shoes

Joey Clutario

When I was ten and the world

revolved around cartoons, and candies

and little nonsense, I said to myself:

I will run to the field without

my shoes on. I will catch crickets

and would put them inside jars,

tighten the lid, watch them slowly

suffocate. And I would feel their heart

Beating inside me. Suddenly breathing

will seem hard. My father will come

and see what I’ve been doing. He will get

angry and will beat me with his leather

belt—its buckles will hit my hips until

they are striped. His knuckles would

brush heavily on my face again.

He’ll take me home while the crickets

resound in the field. While mother

stirs the pumpkin soup, father would

take the rag to the kitchen, grabbing

it with his fists tight, dunk it with force, water

bursting into the air, then wipe my feet very hard.

He would say, “what did I tell you about your shoes!”

But it’s too big for me. Too heavy.

He always tells me to never leave without

shoes on.