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Nice Ugly Toes by Danny Rendleman

Nice Ugly Toes

she said.

Who could not love someone
who is so delicately honest?

And I do. But
I love my toes, too.

And, well, hell: nice?

Nice is a flower, maybe upholstery.

My toes are like those cars
Uncle Jimmy always drove—beaters,
as the phrase is. Seen some miles,

not much taken care of,
adequate for the purpose.

Hammered, dented, some missing parts,
you get the picture.

So me and my toes are sitting at the edge of the prairie
enjoying the view

and the woman who said that is two years dead,
her ashes scattered in a garden not

ten miles away. And I want to say to her,
“Ellen, stop looking at my feet. Look up, Ellen,
the sun is sliding down the sky,

and the light is coming through the wildflowers,

and the light is everything I always wanted,

by Danny Rendleman, first published in Stepping Into the River Once

Editor’s Note: This poem’s opening leads the reader to think that it is about a disagreement, when instead it is about love.


2 responses to “Nice Ugly Toes by Danny Rendleman”

  1. Michelle W Meyer Avatar
    Michelle W Meyer

    Oh, how I love this.

  2. Dana Kinsey Avatar

    I adore this poem – its sweet honesty and how it opens so effortlessly into something so profound.

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