Last week a beloved shoe tree burned to the ground.
A wacky monument is lost and can never be found.
The funny thing is... I heard of it long ago,
but didn't think it existed - guess now I know.
It was the focus of one of grandma's favorite rants,
and involved a picnic, former friends and some ants.
Her story was that the Idaho shoe tree had begun,
'cuz her friends wanted to teach her how to have a little fun.
They were all enjoying a picnic underneath said tree,
and conversing about what it really meant to be free...
All had helped their families survive the Great Depression,
and felt they had learned a quite valuable lesson...
Though hard work was required to pay the bills,
they felt it should be rewarded with certain frills.
Grandma didn't completely agree with what they planned to do,
but knew if she objected, the friendship would be through.
In an attempt to make sure their parents couldn't refuse,
they decided whatever they wanted replaced, they should loose.
They agreed that new shoes would provide immediate comfort,
much more than could come from new pants, shirt or skirt...
The dissention began as they chose where to ditch the evidence,
'cuz grandma felt throwing shoes in a tree didn't make any sense.
Furthermore she thought the end result would be an eye sore,
and didn't want to see it every time she walked past to the store.
Somehow her friends convinced her to "have fun" just this one time,
and that this placement for their statement was actually quite prime.
The group of friends counted to three & yelled... "New shoes!!!"
then threw thiers high up in the tree, despite possible social taboos.
Unfortunately, they hadn't realized they were so close to an ant hill,
and that while they were "playing" the colony had not stood still.
Some ants were stealing their bread, cheese and meat,
and others were viciously biting their shoeless feet.
In the end, grandma had had no fun whatsoever,
and felt the shoe tree idea wasn't all that clever.
All she ever received was a "new" hand-me-down pair,
which were even more uncomfortable than the last one to wear.
She complained about that shoe tree for as long as she lived...
the silly monument / eye sore wasn't easy to forgive.
She cringed every time she walked or drove past the lake,
still angry about the "fun" risk her friends made her take.
The only joy she ever found was from hard work and money.
Having savings stored up in the bank was the only way she felt free.
If she were still alive, I bet she'd throw a party to celebrate,
sorry grandma, someone did burn it down... just a little too late.
© Rachel Hoyt 2010 - 2011
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