family heirloom

i am generational,

to say the least.


passed with slight of hand,

like an illegal transaction.

yet incarceration is not the fear.


it is embarassment.


each time i am repossessed

i am introduced to smile lines.

but i am blamed for forehead wrinkles.

i am not what was wanted.


i become too hard.

each day the happiness fleas.

they say i was not preassembled.

there was no manual included.

i am not what was wanted.


maybe i was supposed

to shape into anything different.



there is a defect inside of me.


could i be unlovable.


the answer is:

the engine starts,

and we are moving.


night fog and the burnt out porch light

expand my pupils.

try to feel any light that’s left.

i need not to see,

as this feels the same each time.


i am prepped with tag and bow,

the note reads,

“damaged goods.”


i cannot tell

if that is a description

or a name.



i am left on the next doorstep,

welcome mat missing,

for the people living inside

would not answer the door

when they heard the knock.


the peephole.

maybe they recognized the curls.

maybe they knew they’d be next.

maybe i am out of options.


i am a family heirloom.


the present you receive,

replicate a smile while holding,

thank the previous owner for,

but then go on

to regift.


a family heirloom

you go on to wish

you had never received.



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