The Duchess of Dead Furniture

Duchess G. was a village girl with high aspirations.

Tortured by her mother, loved sickly by a weak father,

The little Duchess learned how to hate herself.

The solution comes in the shape of a man who has a few pennies more than her.


The man is the prisoner of a war that would never end.

A war that goes on inside his head and always resurfaces from the empty bottle.

Mother preached about men and how easy everything will be after marriage.

The Duchess exchanged one dead alley for another, the man more of a bother.


The mother’s doctrine had never been one of love, so misguided the poor Duchess was.

She ended up here, the ring on her finger from the man with a few more pennies in his

Pocket and stares at his conquest with disdain, the mark of her misfortune imprinted on

Her consenting flesh. The Duchess had lost sight of her dream.


The mother, all too familiar with the scenario, mocks her bridal daughter.

Her torment would not end here. The daughter complied to her role and forgot

All about herself. Love was never part of the dialogue. Nor was security.

The Duchess G. was born to endure, crouching in the nutshell.


Never did the Duchess have a room to herself.

Never was she protected from harm and bad intentions.

She lived her life attached to her husband’s heel in righteous fear and entanglement.

When the hair on her head turned grey, the warrior died.


Relieved, she found pleasures in her solitude.

In this big house she could do whatever she wanted.

The threat was gone, annihilated, the funeral a celebration of freedom in her heart.

Then the realisation: who is the Duchess G.?


The order had gone. The routine had disappeared.

The life within the house had been muted. The walls had seen so much.

Now they fell silent. There was nothing more to see.

The effort was nowhere to be found.


Lethargy numbed the Duchess’ spirit. What to do?

Boredom was never one of her concerns.

All eyes on her, she couldn’t look at what she had buried inside herself.

Thus the rooms were renovated, redecorated, how she had always wanted them.


Flowers, everywhere, inherited furniture, valuables on the walls.

Covering up the misery and sight. Pink and blue and white the rooms

Stared back at her: ‘what now?’

Guilt and regret knocked on every door and she knew it was too late to redecorate.

woman wearing black scoop neck top
Photo by Samad Ismayilov on






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