Shoeless Joys
© By Grady L. Duncan
8/7/2005
Remember the days of discomfort, back when you were in school,
when you had to wear your shoes, ‘cuz that was the unwritten rule?
Sure, they offered you comfort, through those cold wintry days,
but when the weather was mild, they just got in the way.

I bet you remember that feeling, around the last day in May,
when school was out for the Summer, and you could put your shoes away.
Your feet had become tender; the soles were white and soft,
and you could count to twenty, now that both shoes were off.

The first few days were cautious, watching out for rocks and such,
but given a week or so, they didn’t matter that much.
Remember that special feeling, of wiggling you toes in cool sand;
a feeling that most city folks, somehow just don’t understand.

They never knew the full joys, that running barefooted brings,
with no shoes to weight you down, and no tripping on shoestrings;
the joy of running through the meadow, with the grass tickling you toes,
The feeling of “at one with nature,” that every country kid knows.

I admit it had some drawbacks, especially around the chickens coop,
when you might get a little careless, and step in fresh chicken poop.
It always seemed to manage, to squash up between your toes,
and gave off an odor, that curled the hairs in your nose.

Remember how your mother scolded; as you set down to eat…
“You aren’t setting at my table, with such stinky feet?”
Or…”You aren't going to bed, and sleeping between my sheets,
Until you use soap and water and scrub those filthy feet.

Then there were those rusty nails, sharp rocks and broken glass,
just waiting for your discovery, hidden somewhere in the grass.
I bet you still wear the scars, recalling how you got every one.
But aren’t you glad they’re there, reminding you of days of shoeless fun? 

Music - Barefoot Boy
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