Epistle to the Victorians

You drowned their ambitions in white chiffon,
a silken cocoon that smothers as it shelters, and tethered
their restless limbs until they could no longer run.

Are you surprised to find that they have threaded their hands with thorns?

Masked by fluttering scraps of lace, demure smiles and empty eyes
demand that you ravage them—the taintless lips that throb with
unspoken words—and hollow their dainty shells until they echo subservience.

Meanwhile, the burnt nectar of absinthian suns cascades from their fingers,
marring prose with the despair of the strangled just learning to breathe:
strewn amidst the mind's carnage are the remains of their broken genius.

Are you shocked to discover that they have sewn their eyelids shut?

You doused their fiery voices with dark, sweet tea,
a societal elixir that suffocates as it subdues, and caged
their fledgling minds until they could no longer fly—or yearn to.

Are you startled enough to realize the connection between propriety and property?