orange suede parable

i have orange shoes
a ruined orange suede
individual outlets for orange toes
all ten of them orange
my laces a mess, a big, orange ratmess

everybody stares at them
polite people ignore it, try to look me in the face
people i love (my mother) tell me
take them off
just
take
them
off
so you can be just like
all the other nice boys
with nice jobs

i can’t interview with my orange shoes
i live without black pinstripe respectability

(i’ll tell you a secret, lovers and friends:
these orange shoes are actually my feet)

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