Five Poems by James Croal Jackson

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THE STRIP (VEGAS)

in no other place does the sun
swindle the breath from your skin

those who walk in the neon glow
cut the chords of their own harps.

your tired shoes crush cans
among mountain-ascending

penny-win dings &
skipped softness

of losses
listen to the suspended string

how she gently falls
to wine

ACADEMIC ALCOHOL CONSUMPTION

Write what
you know,
they say.

From graduating
college, I learned
how to survive
bars

then crashed
into Mom’s
garage drunk
with the GPA of

zero-point-oh-to-
be-young-again-
oh-Lord-oh-my-
oh-fuck

BLENDOKU

We can work on puzzles all day,
watch the patterns move
from one color to the other.

Block colors twist in gradients
until blending into something else.

The sun removes itself
from the scene, shifts
behind a cloud,

creates a change in light,
a block of bricks on a building
slightly darker than the rest.

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