Size / / /

When they changed their minds,

they changed their forms as well.

Fresh-minted, teneral, a new body—

with new ideas—crept from each

rejected discard. Membranous husks

of former selves wafted sadly

along lonely turnpikes, ghosting

in dying winds, or sagged, deflating,

under NO EGRESS HERE signs.

With each rebirth their exoskeletons

became more heavily armored;

their defense mechanisms more toxic.

Their tongues had a thousand words

for self-improvement, but no words

for guilt, none for regret

F.J. Bergmann frequents Wisconsin and and intends to go down in history as the inventor of Time Pockets. She is the author of Constellation of the Dragonfly, Aqua Regia (Parallel Press, 2007), and Sauce Robert (Pavement Saw Press, 2003). Her work has appeared in Asimov's, Mythic Delirium, Niteblade, Weird Tales, and literary journals that should have known better. She is the poetry editor of Mobius: The Journal of Social Change. You can see more of her work in our archives.
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