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Poems About Shoes

Table of Contents

  1. The Departed Boot-Jack by Amos Russel Wells
  2. My Old Shoes by Anonymous
  3. Put on the Shoe by Anonymous
  4. Is bliss, then, such abyss by Emily Dickinson
  5. Foot-Soldiers by John B. Tabb
  6. High and Low by John B. Tabb
  7. Close Quarters by John B. Tabb
  8. The Shoemaker by Evander A. Crewson

  1. The Departed Boot-Jack

    by Amos Russel Wells

    Behold, a monument we lack
    In memory of good old Jack!

    And let us rear it broad and high,
    In forked splendor, to the sky.

    How often have my weary feet
    Hastened his firm embrace to meet.

    How often has he set them free
    From cramped and burning agony.

    Or dust or mud, or rain or snow,
    No haughty scruple did he show.

    Or tight or loose, or large or small,
    An equal firmness mastered all.

    And whether coarse or fine the heel,
    His cordial grip was true as steel.

    No longer now the tortured foot
    Is prisoned in the racking boot.

    Light, flexible, to nature true,
    We wear the easy-goiug shoe.

    Emancipated now, shall we
    Forget that harsh captivity?

    Forget the friend of our duress
    Who aided us in sore distress?

    Come, let us raise a column fine,
    Of some bifurcated design.

    And be this blazon widely kenned:
    "Hic jacet Jack a soleful friend."

  2. My Old Shoes

    by Amos Russel Wells

    They are dwellings of comfort and rest,
    So easily, friendlily worn;
    They have fashioned a leathery nest
    For each individual corn.

    By many a brotherly mile
    They have molded themselves to my feet,
    Submitting their angles the while
    Till the union is fair and complete.

    They have known how to want or abound,
    Have cared not for blacking and pride,
    And have suffered full many a wound
    With me as their negligent guide.

    What gay recollections they share
    Of sweet-plodding league after league,
    Fern forests, and glittering air,
    And honest, contented fatigue!

    I have brought them and they have brought me
    Thus far on an intricate road,
    And though they are homely to see,
    They deserve a congratulant ode.

    And I fear me the Golden Street
    (The Scriptures I would not abuse)
    Will not feel just right to my feet
    Unless I can wear my old shoes.

  3. Put on the Shoe

    by Amos Russel Wells

    Have you heard the old saw of the Persians,
    That saying both witty and true,
    "The whole world is covered with leather
    To him who is shod with a shoe"?
    Fine calfskin or kid or morocco,
    Great cavalry boots armed with steel,
    The daintiest, jauntiest slippers,
    Coarse brogues tumbled down at the heel--
    What matter the differing fashions?--
    The richest and poorest of you
    Will find the whole world clad in leather
    As soon as you put on your shoe!
    Before, it was cold and uneven,
    Rough pebbles and sharp bits of glass,
    Now, presto! a smooth and warm pavement
    Wherever it please you to pass.

    But ah! there's a maid--have you seen her?--
    A little maid cheery and sweet,
    Who daintily trips, yet I see not
    What leather she wears on her feet;
    For I know by her sunny eyes' sparkle,
    And by the calm curve of her mouth,
    And by the kind grace of her manners,
    Like warm breezes fresh from the South,
    I know that wherever her foot falls
    On loving task speeding or sent—
    The cobbler may laugh, but I care not—
    She is shod with the shoe of content!

    And, little maid, though Cinderella
    Might claim your we shoe for her own,
    And borrowing's out of the question
    For me, with my "sevens" outgrown,
    Just whisper the secret, I pray thee;
    Come, what are the shop and the street,
    And where is the cobbler who fashions
    such beautiful gear for the feet?

    I'll go and I'll offer a treasure
    Will make his big spectacles shine,
    If only two shoes--somewhat larger—
    Like your little shoes, can be mine!
    And then I will don them, and leaping
    Off over the world will I go,
    Off over my frets and my worries,
    Off over my aches and my woe.
    And loudly to all limping grumblers
    My shoemaker cheer shall be sent;
    "The whole world is covered with gladness
    To him who is shod with content!"

  4. Is bliss, then, such abyss

    by Emily Dickinson

    Is bliss, then, such abyss
    I must not put my foot amiss
    For fear I spoil my shoe?

    I'd rather suit my foot
    Than save my boot,
    For yet to buy another pair
    Is possible
    At any fair.

    But bliss is sold just once;
    The patent lost
    None buy it any more.

  5. Foot-Soldiers

    by John B. Tabb

    'Tis all the way to Toe-town,
    Beyond the Knee-high hill,
    That Baby has to travel down
    To see the soldiers drill.

    One, two, three, four, five, a-row—
    A captain and his men—
    And on the other side, you know,
    Are six, seven, eight, nine, ten.

  6. High and Low

    by John B. Tabb

    A boot and a Shoe and a Slipper
    Lived once in the Cobbler's row:
    But the Boot and the Shoe
    Would have nothing to do
    With the Slipper, because she was low.

    But the king and the queen and their daughter
    On the Cobbler chanced to call;
    And as neither the Boot
    Nor the Shoe would suit
    The Slipper went off to the ball.

  7. Close Quarters

    by John B. Tabb

    Little toe, big toe, three toes between,
    All in a pointed shoe!
    Never was narrower forecastle seen
    Nor so little room for the crew.

  8. The Shoemaker

    by Evander A. Crewson

    The shoemaker sat on his bench of leather
    Pegging away on a half-worn shoe;
    Whatever the times or state of the weather,
    He pegged away, the whole day through.

    Sometimes he'd whistle, sometimes he'd sing;
    He cut his patch to fit the hole,
    And he always had some one on the "string,"
    While hammering down another man's "sole."

    Some said his leather was "tan-barked" and old;
    Some said his calf was poorly "revealed,"
    Others said the shoemaker was only "half-souled,"
    Others said he was mighty well "heeled."

    Each trade that he made brought him some "boot,"
    No happier man could well be born;
    Though even the farmer he failed to suit,
    He always had a share in his "corn."

    Though people at him would "bristle" and "wax,"
    And "button-hook" him as he passed,
    Still they finally paid the shoemaker's "tacks,"
    For he got them down at the "last."

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