James Croal Jackson

Where I go from here, I cannot say. Stacks of uneven
boxes. Manufactured forests. The power of chainsaw

abused. Pull a cord your teeth shiver. I didnā€™t change
the thermostat when you asked. I was absorbed into

my own world by the time I walked downstairs. My
mind an ugly barge. Never swam confidently enough

to be here, in the middle of the ocean, no North, no
sun. Sharks in my mind, their triangle teeth and speed.

Jonah and the Whale. Dinnertime has passed. I do
not plan to eat until I learn to quench my sorry thirst.

James Croal Jackson (he/him) is a Filipino-American poet who works in film production. He has two chapbooksĀ (Our Past Leaves,Ā Kelsay Books, 2021 andĀ The Frayed Edge of Memory, Writing Knights, 2017) with one forthcoming:Ā Count Seeds With Me (Ethel,Ā 2022). He editsĀ The Mantle PoetryĀ from Pittsburgh, PA. (