red shoes

Posted: 03/09/2014 in house of change

suzie's shoesi wore red heels for you

to that italian place where even the busboys act mobbed-up.

the band sucked hard, and i had haffa mind to walk up to the bandstand,

wearing running red super gloss on my sweetest smile

and coo a request for one of my own songs.

i wanted to see the dumb look i’d get, and share the joke with you.


they had those cheesy meshed glass candles on the tables,

like mrs paul had just been there, recycling the nets and whipping out the matches.

when did you stop loving me, babe?

why’d you make me be the one to have to see it,

to have to say it?


when i left, it had started to rain

just like in some 40s flick where blondie finally gets a clue.

i waved down a yellow cab and snapped a heel cos the pavement was cracked from winter

and they hadn’t patched it yet.

when i got home, i pitched those shoes in the vestibule;

heartbreaker red, they were, putting a real fine point on it,

like mama does when she lets loose with the i told ya so’s.


well fuck you, dagwood, cos i’ve still got my stage boots.

whad’you got except a cheap sinatra raincoat with empty arms

and your crew of phoney buddies?

drop dead,

and by the way,

i took the cannoli.


for real toads. art by Vandy Massey.

written while listening to B.B. King’s “The Thrill Is Gone”, courtesy of Hedgewitch at Verse Escape.


  1. ManicDdaily says:

    So clever and so poignant. It is wonderful the way that you work background in through your details–the stage boots and the “one of my own songs” giving a complete life’s story so quickly–and the tone is great, right to the very end. I always love the tone of these Coal Black pieces, this a special one. (All are–how can that be-all special but they are.)

  2. hedgewitch says:

    Coal does a little deeper dive than normal here–not that she’s a shallow girl, because that would be a *big* mistake to assume–but she’s not just singing and playing her Fender here, she’s showing the workings of things, the chasm between want and have, The raincoat with empty arms, and the heel-snapped shoes thrown to the vestibule say it all, yet there’s still a flickering light from those cheesy candles to lend a backwards glamor to the memories, however tinged with the internalized ‘I told you so.’ which becomes ‘shoulda known better.’ That second stanza, with its too real to be comfortable honesty, stands out especially for me.

  3. Love the storytelling in this.. it makes it so strong that you adress it in second person.. and yes the cannoli is the dot over the i… Love it.

  4. Mama Zen says:

    I love the part about the blonde getting a clue. Perfect.

  5. One should definitely only ever red heels for oneself. Sadly I can’t walk in them any more.

  6. That B. B. King song is one of my favorites. How come when I listen to Lucille wail, I don’t get no inspiration–nothin’ even close to that…

  7. lolamouse says:

    “Leave the gun. Take the cannoli.”

  8. Grace says:

    I love the different voice – She’s got the spirit & spunk ~ Thanks for linking up Shay ~

  9. grapeling says:

    what’s that homage, with the cannoli? Casino? Delicious ~

  10. dani says:

    yo! cannoli’s the best!

  11. Vandy says:

    I’m so pleased she took the cannoli. 😀

  12. Coal, I’ve been there, in those same heels! All the 40s ambiance, the Sinatra and the trenchcoat, and real live BAND, even. And I can hear BB singin “The Thrill Is Gone” like it’s in the speakers! This is electric with passion and that last line, the Godfather, ooooooh so good. I cannot even say how good this is. Amy

  13. PS sorry I’ve been absent. Working on a novella I think you’ll like and will pass you some pages, also Holy Week and Easter were nonstop work!!!

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