He said I was an expensive luxury,
happiness would cost him too much.
Gazing at my ruby shell, he said
“Your lips are the plumpest cherries.”
(Later he told me that cherries gave him indigestion.)
Then he said he was afraid of my golden yoke,
that it was a beautiful, succulent trap
that would nourish
then choke him.
He put me back on the shelf, walked
out of the museum, in misery, in love.
Other buyers came - I never forgot him;
I sit on this shelf now, waiting,
feeling luckier – I have cracks from being dropped;
I’ve gathered enough dust to gather him.