- Vol. 05
- Chapter 04
The Woman Who Refused to Wear ShoesDon’t take this wrong, but she was strange.
The stranger the better is what I always said,
which is what I thought when she told me,
You can’t hear Earth speak if you wear shoes.
You're deafened by barriers, so be vulnerable,
and listen to Earth's wisdom, she said.
There was deceptive simplicity about her,
no-nonsense, brisk, brusk, muscularly lean
and chillingly sparse with her words.
She even walked barefoot in the snow.
Always barefoot on snow. On ice.
The colder the better is what she said.
The stranger the better is what I always said.
But we knew better; she wasn't immune
to her own mistakes, which explains why
she strode into the Cairngorms one morning.
Into the peaks. Into the valleys. Into primal
sun beating down on a cloak of fresh snow,
her toes crunching on crusty white, grabbing
the cold soil underfoot as her purple cape
swept the wind aside with intriguing glory.
The Woman Who Refused to Wear Shoes
I'd like to think that she’s a kestrel flying
overhead, or she’s somewhere in a secret
grove of trees, or traipsing on a perishingly
cold beach, barefoot, healing her soul
through the soles of her feet. But nobody
knows what happened. She disappeared
into winter. She was a strange woman, but
the stranger the better is what I always said.