February 24, 2019

Three Poems by James Croal Jackson: : "Become Whole With Yourself", "End of Relationship (Winter)" and "Two Workouts"

James Croal Jackson is the author of The Frayed Edge of Memory (Writing Knights Press, 2017). His poetry has appeared in Columbia Journal, Rattle, Hobart, FLAPPERHOUSE, and elsewhere. He edits The Mantle from Columbus, Ohio. Find him at jimjakk.com and @jimjakk.

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Become Whole With Yourself

A cave, a raven horse-
hoofed sunlit human. Your journey
to know you forward: yourself
tar. Orange toward opening.
Darkness, fire, form,

End of Relationship (Winter)

I demand forever with flurry and tempest
my voice scorched except you tell me where
to bury our ice because I dug it up with
a shovel the cemetery in our driveway
our kitchen our bedroom chiseled away
because it’s too cold to melt

Two Workouts

Sara exercises to a fitness video on her laptop
at the kitchen table I eat chocolate chip cookies

the dog gets too close the moment she kicks air
he walks to a window to study his reflection I inhale

as Sara does then the dog stares back exhales my reflection
consuming me but soon my body how my feet are bare

on coffin wood and Sara throws punches while dough
collapses in my fingers before I move grease to mouth

yes yes YES alongside the workout instructor to techno
beats a pitch of butter sugar flour down my gullet

I have accomplished an entire row from the baking pan
Sara says that’s enough but she’s just on a water break

many minutes into this an eternity away from ending
she says her stomach hurts and I get it, mine too

James Coral Jackson

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