Shoes

When Moses met God on the mountain
the first thing the Divine spoke of
was shoes. How are we to interpret this?
Where do you find God when
you have no mountains? Some say just
stand in the lowlands and call,
but you must be willing to take
whichever god might answer.

“Whoever would save his life
will lose it,” said the prophet,
who was harsh, but never cold.
Once, driving across the steaming
lake, something beckoned, but I
was too impressed by the possible
to follow. Sometimes, in the
low light it haunts me. It will
share neither face nor direction.
It mutters through its hot breath
something that sounds like “shoes.”
When I gave up high heels I heard
it fluttering around the window
for a month. Some nights I think
I will live into this obsession. Go
barefoot long before spring.

Some nights the voice blows in
from the Sound:
“Take off what binds you.
You are standing on holy ground.”

Lynn Ungar Blessing the Bread: Meditations
(Boston, Skinner House Books, 1996: pp 41-2

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