Sudden – the mother’s death – she wobbles
takes to wearing the old lady’s shoes
keeps them soled and heeled, polishes
over scuffs, wraps in soft scarves
nestles them in bandboxes at bedtime.
The sisters go up West, parade Jimmy Choos
and Prada in Bond Street and Soho
while she conceals her toes in old slippers
to watch Saturday Kitchen, pops feet
in old Crocs when she weeds borders.
Until a friend helps her make a stand –
takes her to Russell & Bromley and clubbing.
On Saint Crispin’s Eve she leaves
after midnight, barefoot, hand-in-hand
with a man who strokes her tingling insteps.
Lesley’s poetry has been published in magazines and anthologies, including: Prole, Tears in the Fence, The Interpreter’s House, Sarasvati, Reach and The Butchers Dog, and online, including in the Poetry Kit website, Algebra of Owls, Strange Poetry and Three Drops from a Cauldron. Recent awards in competitions include first prize in the Sentinel Literary Quarterly (SLQ) competition August 2016.