James Croal Jackson
among the blue desks was a meager
audition for adulthood crumpled
into a mess of wooden shadows reciting
barbell lines on the film school second
floor (stair steps closer to Orion) how
I was dreaming young of the world’s
grand magnanimousness suffused
with balloons that smelled of palm frond
everglades my school-sanctioned camera
would record the nightglow trees by lights  
of Coe Lake where it snowed pine cones
in the backyard of my mother’s house
where acres stretch forever rugs of green grass
and hunger the endless hunger for somewhere
anywhere else

James Croal Jackson

James Croal Jackson (he/him) is a Filipino-American poet. He has two chapbooks, Our Past Leaves (Kelsay Books, forthcoming 2021) and The Frayed Edge of Memory (Writing Knights Press, 2017), with recent poems in White Wall Review, Subnivean, and BOMBFIRE. He edits The Mantle Poetry ( from Pittsburgh, PA. (

James' Artcles on KGB LitMag

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