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A Bad Year
(for footwear)

a pair of sneakers,
a Kolhapuri..
a pair of flip-flops
an elegant mojri

the ones that Maximus loved the most
ended up with more than just toothy holes
sandals became slippers
while slippers became soles

Come monsoons, when the weather’s best
footwear quality’s often put to test
Three new pairs were bought
two caught fungus rot

it’s not too easy…
when it rains when it should not
for sometimes people with bikes
in floodwater have to walk
the flip-flops don’t agree
with a road that becomes a river
for they come off your feet
to end up in a sewer.

Public places are many
where you must remove your shoes
and keep them on a public shelf
where the public is free to choose
a pair to steal or borrow
much to the owner’s sorrow.
a yoga class in this case
was one such public place
from where I returned one day in November
sans shoes, and this I’ll always remember.

Maximus finished a pair more
one each from two different to score
the surviving intact, mismatched pair
no brave or weird person would dare to wear.

indeed, a bad year
for footwear