Down, Down, Dowry

I’ve carried at the caved nape
All my years of able legs
A gilded locket, golden draped
Around my beating chest
Locked inside its welded clasp
Designed to keep her tokens sincere,
Pressed against the giggle or the gasp,
Always treasured, always near

I’ve worn an empty locket.

She charges me for the contents:
Her lost collage of rhapsody
My engraved portent
Of heartache and tragedy
I absently sign receipts
Confused at the entries
Written as fanciful deceits:
She was always empty,

The chain at my neck,

The great weight of neglect
Desires of intimacy and innocence
In perpetual shipwreck:
Love entangled in hindrance,
Tossed to dark waters
Sinking in a murky pocket
Struggles the useless daughter
Against the heavy, empty locket.

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