Kelly Cherry, Poet Laureate of Virginia (2010 – 2012)

The Very Many Shoes of Imelda Marcos

(published in the Women’s Review of Books, July/August 2013)

Serial shoe shopper Imelda Marcos
Displayed her finds in a room dedicated
To that purpose. There were hundreds of pairs,
In every color and combination of colors,
With or without sequins, bows, and straps.
A woman couldn’t help but covet them
Despite discomfort with her better self:
Stilettos, espadrilles, platforms, and pumps;
Wedges, Mary Janes, and kitten heels,
Open-toe, slingbacks, slides, and stacked heels,
Ghillies, jellies, flip-flops, and chunky heels,
Ballet shoes, sandals, flats, and boots,
Rattlesnake, satin, silk, and doubtless a
Glass slipper and its perfect, mated match.
Meanwhile, orphaned Filipino children
Scratched through city dumps, rooting for food.
Seldom is the line between good and evil
As clear as it was when I toured Imelda’s shoes.

Self never thought of Imelda as the type to wear flip-flops.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.


  1. August 17, 2013 at 8:47 pm

    I’d love to post this on my blog and FB

  2. August 17, 2013 at 8:55 pm

    I think as long as you say it’s been published in Women’s Review of Books, Vol. 30 No. 4 (July/August 2011), it will be OK?

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