Small Shoes by Maggie Smith

If there are fewer stars now

than when I was a child,

 

I can’t say

which are missing,

who was the last to see them.

 

Is it not a crime

unless we call it a crime?

 

It is difficult to document

a disappearance,

a boat full of stars

 

capsized.

Stars lying in the sand

 

face-down,

wearing small shoes.

Add that to the report:

 

some of the stars washed up

in small shoes.

 

 

This poem was first published in Rise Up Review, reprinted in the New York Times, and made into a short film by Motionpoems. Maggie Smith is the author of the poetry collections Good Bones (Tupelo Press 2017), The Well Speaks of Its Own Poison (Tupelo Press 2015), and Lamp of the Body (Red Hen Press 2005). In 2016 her poem “Good Bones” went viral internationally. You can find out more about her here.

Inspired by

© 2019 Spontaneity. Copyright of contributions remains with the artist.