Repeated Until Learned

My grandmother wore $1 flat shoes her whole life.
Even after she married someone with money
He didn’t buy her new shoes
Her daughter, my mother, thought she deserved new shoes
Nice, comfortable shoes.
Grandma raised a dozen children and never complained
She was a good person.
She never asked for new shoes
And never got them.

I always had holes in my socks.
I hated going to new people’s houses
Because I might have to take off my shoes
Then everyone would see the holes in my socks
I thought I deserved new socks.
Mom and dad couldn’t buy new socks.
Someone gave us new socks one year.
I was embarassed.

I hated being dropped off at school in our rusty old car.
Everyone else had a nice car that looked new and didn’t make funny noises
I thought I deserved to ride in a nice car

I grew up and studied hard and bought my own new socks
And I never made my friends take off their shoes when they came to my new house
And I gave everyone rides in my new car
I was so generous
I gave lavish gifts
Like no one had ever given us

Then I moved to a new city
And sold my car
And I sold my house
And I started all over.
And I was a good person for a very long time.
But no one bought me anything.
And somehow I thought they should have.
Because grandma deserved new shoes.