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White Sandals

A ten year old girl
stood in the alleyway

in white buckled sandals
that made her feel too tall—

like someone twelve not ten
like someone more carefree,

sandals for a girl who could just
be a girl and not—

one begging her mother not
to walk away,

pleading her only parent to stop
going farther down

into the alleyway dark.
Heels slightly wobble and tilt

on bare red ankles
on ten year old legs

always ready to run.

4-20-13
(Originally published in Disorder: Mental Illness and Its Affects)

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