i bought new shoes today. they’re madden girl, three- or four-inch heels, closed toe, black with white polka dots. the heel itself is a deep red, patent-shiny. they’re gorgeous. you would be amazed. you would never have bought them for me, because you never would have believed i could love such a girly thing. you bragged about how not-girly i was. you would have bought those shoes for her instead.
but you did buy her shoes, didn’t you? black-and-white checkerboard pattern, like the flag that waved you both home from a hard day’s racing. she saw them in a shop window. then you went home and got on google, and a few weeks later, the shoes were hers. i heard she wore them to her wedding. as far as i know, her husband still doesn’t know who gave them to her.
i think i was a talisman you used to ward off all the girliness in the world. you boxed me in, and that word wasn’t written on the box. then you resented how muffled i got. and then you missed the things you’d defined out of me, the athleticism and the spontaneity and the occasional penchant for lipstick, and you found them somewhere else instead.