The House on Mango Street
How we cite our quotes:
Do you like these shoes? But the truth is it is scary to look down at your foot that is no longer yours and see attached a long long leg. (17.7)
Dressing up in grown-up shoes is both fun and scary for Esperanza and her friends. The shoes make their own feet look alien to them. The description of the little girls' "long long leg[s]" is disturbingly sexualized – we get the same creepy feeling that we do when we see toddlers wearing makeup in a beauty pageant.
Them are dangerous, he says. You girls too young to be wearing shoes like that. Take them shoes off before I call the cops, but we just run. (17.13)
The high-heeled shoes act as a sort of magic talisman that transforms the little girls into women – a dangerous transformation, as Mr. Benny notes, because the little girls aren't ready for the sexualized world of adulthood.
All night the boy who is a man watches me dance. He watched me dance. (19.8)
For the first time, Esperanza notices a boy watching her, and she seems both mystified and pleased by the experience.