These shoes

what feet have walked in these shoes,
where have they traveled untold miles,
have they trod a hot dusty plantation road,
bruised and burdened by years of burden,
have they felt the blisters of the field,
the pain of the long hoed furrow,
what misery have they withstood, these shoes
wading the rising stream of history,
stumbling across conflict’s slippery rocks,
crossing the granite steps of destiny,
have they trampled over barbwire,
heard the whistle of bullets, death’s sting,
their soles sodden and soaked in blood,
tripping on the remains of fallen heroes,
have they followed the path of freedom,
marching in the name of righting wrong,
washed by the fire hose of ignorant bigotry,
what do these shoes know that we should know,
has their leather and thread held,
binding the resolve of a nation to be better,
to be something more than religious zeal,
weathering the greed of the money counters,
patching their wear with a people’s conscience,
have they taken up the challenge to leaders,
demanded that what is written will be truth,
that all that exist are equal in life, in creation,
is it only for poets to ask where they have been,
will others find the answers in their soul,
who will pick up these shoes and repair them,
who will continue this magnificent human journey,
who will believe in the brotherhood of all creatures
who will wear these shoes

©2011, Donald Harbour

10 thoughts on “These shoes

  1. I still believe.

    I am one woman with a keyboard and/or a pen. The same could be said for each of us poets….perhaps individually we are just a drop in the proverbial ocean. But we have what we have, and we have the ability to use it for the good.

    We still have a way to go. The days of the firehoses are only a half-century behind us. We still must believe.



  2. Alright Donald that sets a bar, and way up high. And addressing this poetically is a challenge for sure in many ways. You have both an honest and a gentle hand. Thank you for the contribution to our prompts. ~neil


  3. Thank you, Donald,
    Redirected from Wordgathering by…I’ve gone fishing for a prompt and ended up here… And I think I’m going to add to my Mermaid Verse with a combination of “I have a foolish Dream…and Shoes. Well just because they fit (well they will fit once I write the piece… I’ll be back with the ‘link’ soon. Until then you are welcome to see the others at and the page Mermaid verse. The wordpress link has my small stones for The River.


  4. Pingback: A Study in Color « Raven's Wing Poetry

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