The soles antediluvian
of my hollow being sustain
with silent patience, or patient silence,
the blunt end
of your insecurities and neuroses.

Have you ever thought
of the beatings I get
from cruel concrete pavements
and wooden floors that reek
of lemon-scented dye wax?

The stat book of all the
fouls I received against debris and rocks
had long since been deluged
by both defensive and offensive kinds,
even the technicals.
Sadly, I drew no shots, just bruises from impact
that left me more empty than ever.
And pained.

I endure the stench
of your human inadequacies;
take time out to absorb
the wetness that streaks from your flesh
like tears. Sweat.

There are the clumps of gum:
the sugary sweetness chewed out;
dog waste, even the toffee candy from Brunei
that you didn't like.
You were too enraptured with the sights ahead
to look down once in a while
at the path you tread.

Times came that you outgrew me
or gave me away to less-classy promdi relatives
or I was just too worn
to show off anymore.

Your tootsies' humble sheath,
I am at your bidding and discretion.

Once I was a pair of boots with spurs,
then suede pumps, and docksiders.
Now--for now--I'm a Nike Air.

This work is copyright 1997 The Philippine Star and Shirley Siaton-Parabia.
Please do not take, repost or distribute in any form without express written permission.