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It starts at the tip.

I’ve walked a thousand miles in my own shoes, and I need a new pair.

These shoes I have worn for the last years, my feet have outgrown.

This soul of mine needs new soles.

The first fifteen years, I wore the anti-conformist’s brand. The next fifteen, I traded them up for integrity. Now, I’m shopping for something that won’t squeeze my mind’s toes.

I think I know just the kind I need, but they don’t come cheap.

I’ve seen some people wearing them–they seem to glide a little– like maybe these new shoes have given them a bounce.

I’m thinking: I’ve got two feet.

I’ve got two longings.

I’ve got two of most of everything.

I asked a ventriloquist who had a spring in his step, if I could sneak a peek at the bottom of his footwear, after all, here’s a man who’s just like me: talking out of the side of his mouth, trying to sound clear.

I was surprised at the tag, embedded deep into the sole of his shoe.

Is this what the bounce is all about, I asked.

“Yes,” returned the wooden puppet through the man’s mouth.

I stared at the word that will be my new slipper.



About Mel

Montreal queer fiction writer.

2 responses to “It starts at the tip.

  1. jfaraday


    I also just signed a contract with BSB, and found your site through your BSB author site.

    I really loved this essay. You have a way with words.

    Jess Faraday

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