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by Dina Friedman
An abandoned sock
is sadder than divorce
because socks do not knowingly cheat
on their partners. The choice to co-mingle
is forced upon them, perhaps they weep
from the loss of their mate
perhaps all they want is togetherness.
All I want is togetherness
with my socks
and my children
because children are like socks
clinging to your feet in the heat
but seductive in their winter warmth
despite the temptation to leave them
wet, and unrolled in the washing machine.
My teenage daughter thinks socks should be communal
like free love in the California 60s
as if there's still so much abundance to spread around.
Years ago, I was a wild sock child
but this is a secret I will not tell my children.
In the public world, I wear socks that match
and try to detach myself from the ones with holes
though perhaps it is classist
to discriminate against poor socks.
Better to darn them
but that would require training I do not have,
and leads to the question
do socks need therapy
or do they simply need
a mechanism to cope
against absorption of odors
and angry children
I do not know
but socks call to me
in a way that gloves and shirts do not
in a way my children no longer do
despite my begging
and stealing their socks
First published: Gyroscope Review