William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Barefoot Journal’

Proverb 17

And what of the salamander we met on the trail, skin smooth, mud-colored, orange beneath, walking on its toes, crossing in the chilly damp? And what of the woodpecker knocking unseen from above? What of the massive cleft rock in the stream? Are we to think nothing of them and pretend their existence away? Or shall we carry them with us, and make ourselves living reminders that all is not […]

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Learning to Walk

Old friends, old souls — who else would care for these pages? In today’s mail I received a fall shoe catalog. It made me wonder: when was the last time I wore socks or shoes? I wish I had noted the date. A fair guess, though, would be somewhere in the neighborhood of four months. In that time my feet, ankles, and legs have gained a tremendous amount of strength. […]

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You Will Forgive Me

Maybe I have changed. Clearing the downspouts of birch leaves in a light rain at fifty-three degrees while wearing shorts and short sleeves and being barefoot is something I have never done before. That I felt warm and completely comfortable while doing it is, I think, as good a sign as the early fall rain, which is drenching everything in fine winter style. Fifty-three, of course, is not cold. The […]

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Good to See You, Strange to See You Go

The nine-millimeter sandals are designed to keep one grounded by means of a copper plug, which makes regular contact with the earth, and a single continuous conductive lace, which hugs the foot and keeps the sandal snugly and comfortably in place for a near barefoot experience — ideal for this morning’s three-mile climb on the Perimeter Trail to Rackett Ridge and the subsequent scamper down again. The most strenuous part […]

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Autumn Fires

Can you imagine standing on your bare feet in dewy grass, and still thinking you must search for the truth? Sept 21, 2021 . Autumn Fires On the sidewalk after coffee, my dead father appears long enough to inhale the smoke rising from my friend’s freshly lit cigarette. The three of us smile, say nothing. Recently Banned Literature, November 12, 2009 . [ 1234 ]

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Shall I Tell You?

Being right is such a small, fleeting thing. I would rather be loved, Or unnoticed, than looked up to, respected, and feared. It rained through the night — Shall I tell you about my wet feet? — about her smile when I came in from the yard? September 19, 2021 . [ 1233 ]

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The Patience of Ferns

Four miles of dusty trails, with side trips down to what is now a very low-running stream. No clouds, no fog, no mist, no smoke. Far off, on the other side of the canyon, the great echoing voice of a raven. The talk now is of rain, and the patience of ferns. Bare feet. Thirty-nine degrees. Even in drought, we outlive our own death. September 16, 2021 . [ 1229 […]

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Neskowin

When the tide is out, one can see the barnacled stumps of an ancient ghost forest on the beach at Neskowin, one of several along the Oregon coast. Seen through the mist, the trees look like spirits — part wood, part rock, part man. They are Sitka spruce, and carbon dating has revealed their age to be around two thousand years. Our feet bare, we walked the beach for about […]

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If You Would Have

It’s been a week and a half since I’ve worn socks and shoes, and even then I had them on for only an hour. I’ve also not worn full-length pants since then. I’ve written in shorts, I’ve made soup and salad in shorts, I’ve tended the garden in shorts, I’ve walked by the river in shorts, and I’ve bought berries in shorts. And yet prior to this summer, wearing shorts […]

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