My first pair were patent red
with pink laces and fluffy lining –
the only thing to remind everyone
that I was a girl and not a boy.
I’d wear them proudly in my pushchair,
not ready to christen the ground just yet,
and kick them off with every tantrum.
Now they sit in a box in the loft
gathering dust among finger paintings,
school photos and glittery pasta,
ten sizes too small.
*Winner of the Terry Kelly Poetry Prize 2018, all rights author’s own.
About the Author:
Lauren Aspery is a 22-year-old student from the North East of England and is currently undertaking a research Master’s in British children’s poetry at Newcastle University. Lauren is a two-time winner of the Terry Kelly Poetry Prize and has since become the award’s coordinator. She placed second in the Young Poets Network Carol Ann Duffy poetry challenge and performed her poem at the British Academy’s celebration of Duffy’s Laureateship. Her work takes inspiration from her experiences growing up.