"[there must be one thing you can’t have in order to be alive]" by Jon-Michael Frank

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June 11, 2021 

[there must be one thing you can’t have in order to be alive]


Jon-Michael Frank

there must be one thing you can’t have in order to be alive 

watching flowers open on youtube 

I mean, my life is wasted on my life

requirement is simple 

it takes a wound to

return to yourself 

the new sky 

is the same as the old one

its achy maw 

its barbwire grip 

people are whatever they are next to

that won’t remember them

a dumb desert 

a broken open sign

whatever I love best

reminds me of something else

Copyright © 2021 by Jon-Michael Frank. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on June 11, 2021, by the Academy of American Poets

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“I wrote this during a punishingly hot Philadelphia summer. The sound of dirt bikes and busted open fire hydrants was everywhere. I remember writing it while sweating. I remember being in love.”
Jon-Michael Frank

Jon-Michael Frank is the author of Nostalgia Flower (Witch Craft Mag, 2016) and the graphic novels, Dark Garbage and Is This the Right Color....(Floating World Comics, 2019). They live in Austin, Texas. 
Dark Garbage
(Floating World Comics, 2019)


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Thanks to Anaïs Duplan, author of Blackspace: On the Poetics of an Afrofuture (Black Ocean, 2020), who curated Poem-a-Day for this month’s weekdays. Read a Q&A about Duplan’s curatorial approach and find out more about our guest editors for the year
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