That Summer I Still
Believed in Everything

James Croal Jackson

Blackbirds linger over the summer of 2012—
I followed them to Austin ahead of winter’s white

knuckle, veered west into the world of tv,
an industry where I found & fought the devil

in myself, his blade lodged still deep within me.
I chose Los Angeles over love, a dead dream

over crisp grass, intoxicated phone calls of
a faraway devotion– how I once told Tony

I’d still marry you, how we were inseparable
until I forced a two-thousand mile difference

we would never bridge.



James Croal Jackson (he/him) has a chapbook, The Frayed Edge of Memory (Writing Knights Press, 2017), and poems in Pacifica, Reservoir, and indefinite space. He edits The Mantle (themantlepoetry.com). Currently, he works in the film industry in Pittsburgh, PA. (jimjakk.com)


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