She Put Her Unspent Love in a Cardboard Box

And for more than two decades, her daughter has been taking it out.

By Genevieve Kingston

In the back of my closet is a small cardboard chest with brass handles and latches that has followed me to every new address; it’s the first thing I find a place for as the moving truck pulls away. An old sticker on the bottom says it was purchased at Ross for $26.99. The only remaining contents are three wrapped presents marked in my mother’s tidy cursive: “Engagement,” “Wedding” and “First Baby.”

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