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Humanity is a Pre-Existing Condition & Other Poems by James Croal Jackson
- 45 Poems of Protest
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No Words After the Election

a duck waddling in your throat
before a thunderstorm

try to quack all you can
navigate through water

(your wings
do not function)

remain afloat you remember
your body floats (what’s the word)

go fast as you can
in this pond you call home

you duck
you slow duck

come home to algae

fish

geese

ripples



The Appointment of the Special Counsel

out of nowhere there’s a razor-thin wire hope
smoke from the top of the mountain and
we small spectators watching those distant trees
burn chatter among ourselves that finally there’s
a chance to reveal the truth about the source of smoke
and to be honest we’re terrified if there isn’t
a fire because we see it and wonder what else
is covered up because it’s there all around us in the air



Humanity is a Pre-existing Condition

tell the father to pull out, tell the mother
to hide. there are children of your children

who exist in an illness of blood,
bone, skin, hair, and lung.

there is a barren landscape–
stone predated ocean,

before the earth got
sick with smoke, with plastic.

bacteria teemed on this rock
like an unstoppable infection

that infected power
to make powerless those infected.


Biography
James Croal Jackson is the author of The Frayed Edge of Memory
(Writing Knights Press, 2017). His poetry has appeared in Hobart,
FLAPPERHOUSE, Yes Poetry, and elsewhere. He edits The Mantle,
a poetry journal. Find him in Columbus, Ohio or at
jimjakk.com.
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Published August 18, 2019

Special Project: 45 Poems of Protest

Humanity is a Pre-Existing Condition & Other Poems

by James Croal Jackson
(New Franklin, Ohio, USA)
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