Flash Fiction: My Freudian Shoe Therapist

by LJ Frank

New Year’s Day. It was mid-morning. We both desired some fresh air. A walk in the park seemed reasonable. The weather was somewhere between a slight chill and a moist warm depending if you were walking in the shadows of the tall buildings. Crossing the avenue to the park we decided to walk toward a coffee shop about a city block away.

My friend looked over at me, “You appear lost in thought,” she observed. 

“I had a rather strange dream this morning. It probably means nothing. Perhaps it was the inexpensive red wine last night,  but I only had two glasses and some veggies.” I replied

“Would you like to tell me about it?” She asked.

I massaged my forehead. “In my dream I was walking down a long corridor. I heard voices in the distance and looked around and couldn’t see anyone. I turned a corner and found myself in another seemingly endless corridor. The strange thing…I was barefoot. I was looking for my dress boots. I was filled with unexplainable angst and my pillow and sheet were wet from the perspiration. I woke up briefly and fell back to sleep and into the dream again.”

“Odd but interesting. What happened next?”

“I kept walking trying to find an exit when I saw a man standing by a doorway that led into a spacious office with bare walls, and two wood chairs facing each other in the middle of the room. The man asked me if I had found my shoes. I shook my head.  He then paused and asked me to take a seat and walked away.”

“Was that it?” She inquired. 

 I looked at my friend, “A slender woman with long grey hair tied back in a bun and wearing a gentle smile across her angular face walked in and towards me. I stood up and she inexplicably hugged me. I assume to reassure me. “I’m sorry for your loss,” she stated with a sadness to her voice and was about to say something else then closed her mouth. She then walked out of the room.”

“That was it?”


“Was this the first time you had this dream?”

“Yeah. I don’t know what to make of it.”

“Well, as your shoe therapist we like to know the feet of our clients. The health of the feet is directly related to the quality and design of your shoe which in turn affects the expression of how we view and live our life. Shoes have a deep, sensual and earthy connotation.”

“Sensible,” I said, as we reached the patio of the coffeeshop and sat down at a small table.

We ordered some coffee and my friend continued. “As the French philosopher Montaigne once observed, for each foot is a shoe. Think of the human foot as symbolic of the phallus and in turn the shoe as symbolic of the vagina. Each time you slip your foot into a shoe you are engaging in a form of an erotic act. Your shoes are part of your character, personality and suggestive of your performance and how well you live your life. Your shoes indicate how you feel about yourself and who you are that day depending on the shoes or boots you are wearing…as well as how much you are willing or can afford to invest in your sexual self-expression. They express the journey in your life. And a naked foot…well, need I say anything further?”

“Are you telling me that my dream is reflective of…?”

She touched my hand, “Don’t you know?” She said as she then crossed her legs I noted her seasoned toeless sandal dangling from her naked foot.