February 6, 2023

Ex Lovers

by Karen Neuberg

Without malice, I’ve used my taxidermy skills to preserve ex lovers, keeping them intact, just as when we parted. Unlike me, they never age. Never go on, though surely they’ve gone on in their own lives. Little do they know I line them along light-filled windowsills beside the medicinal herbs. Sometimes I lift one into a watered pot, sticking their feet in wet soil. A few have been left, almost forgotten, on shelves that surround my walls. They’ve all shrunken in size so the books tower over them like 100-year old trees. Covered in dust, they topple when the ceiling fan is on high, spewing fragments that get into my nostrils and make me sneeze and sneeze.


Karen Neuberg’s poems have appeared in numerous journals including Glassworks, Gone Lawn, Really System, Unbroken, and Verse Daily. She is the author of PURSUIT (Kelsay Books,) and the chapbook “the elephants are asking” (Glass Lyre Press). She holds an MFA from The New School and is associate editor of the online journal First Literary Review-East.