Foot Binding

Eight-hour filibuster. Four-inch heels.
Three hours to go. Why did I do this?
I felt regal at first. A goddamned queen.
I could see over the lectern. Make eye contact.
Would they respect me in flats?

The short congressmen. They stand on a box.
I blame Frank for this. Frank and his shoes.
Frank and his feet. He’ll rub these feet with warm oil into the night.
And no shoes tomorrow. Maybe the fluffy pink slippers.
The tailor’s bunion. Must get it treated.

These stilettos are shrinking. My toes overlap.
Should have brought a second pair. One size larger.
Two sizes larger. An inch shorter.
After five hours no one cares. I could stand eye to eye with Dinklage.
Look at him. He’s a king or something.

Wendy Davis went thirteen hours. Wendy Davis isn’t seventy-eight.
Wendy Davis wore pink tennis shoes. Then high heels for her Vogue shoot.
Must stop saying “I won’t stand for it.” Must quit calling Republicans “heels.”
Now it’s time for the man with no shoes. Draw it out.
When it’s time for the man with no feet… let out a little sob.


…for Poets United Midweek Motif – Shoes


Why isn’t “one” pronounced “on,” as in awning, or “own” as in only?

Why “won”? Where did that w come from?

No one knows. You could look it up.

But my good friend and linguist Cornelis Tromp (be sure to pronounce it “tromp”), is publishing a paper explaining his theory, proven by experiment, like in science, to be true.

So I give you the scoop here. Or is it, I give you the straight poop here?

“One” used to be pronounced like, say, the on in onanist, that is, with the “oh” sound, like in own. The word onanist used to be pronounced with the on like in onion (uh), but folks who were close to onanists noticed that while they started out going “uh uh uh,” at the critical moment they would change over to “oh oh OH.” For more on onanists, see here.

Anyway, Tromp’s experiment: He would offer a plate of cookies to a baby. The baby would reach for the cookies saying “wuh wuh wuh” and Tromp would shout “ONLY ONE, ONLY ONE.” Then the baby, startled, would go “WAH WAH WAH.”

What have we learned? The baby starts out life knowing that a single cookie is pronounced “wun.”

As for the spelling change when going from pronounce to pronunciation, I will explain that in a subsequent post.

Haiku Challenge: Moon

climbing orange moon
by stages grows silvery
nocturnal night light


For Haiku Horizons

haiku warmup

ladybug walks flies
does not stay sit roll over
at my stern command

time invisible
quiet dimension we pass
through from birth to death