Quadratic End (a golden shovel)

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March 21, 2022 by The Citron Review

by Benjamin Truax


What is the function of the erstwhile ex
who declared he wants to part as equals,
but only frames our time as net negative
like dwindling populations of the honeybee?

There was a time I would be his plus-
one. We’d tangle our unwed-able fingers or
guzzle fruity drinks at the open bars (his minus
alcohol)—like the one time we ditched the

reception to transgress at Salsa on the Square.
He waxed poetic: claimed he’d dug to the root,
saw the problem, like the raw, exposed nerve of
a rotting tooth, stinging as if there could be

too much of a good thing that can’t be squared.
He thought it brave to call it quits minus
any consideration or basic regard for
what it would mean to me. I have more than a

few regrets. We never went together to the sea,
for example. And just like that we were over
as a combined unit, arching downward to
the embarrassing realization that there is a
                                            limit to love.


Benjamin Truax is a writer and poet from Cincinnati, Ohio. He received his MFA in creative writing from American University, in Washington, D.C., where he currently teaches writing.




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