Shakespeare Say

After nobody
who made us possible


My home: Valdez, Alaska.

My voice is wrong.
(한글) Hangul comes out of lips not yet English.

My skin is wrong.
Lemon, pith is bitter.

Maybe I was just born
in the wrong decade

I am doing the best I can.

I am broken
and piss fills my pants.

Mom always said,
There would be days like this.




(After Rita Dove)





Juleen Eun Sun Johnson was born in Seoul, South Korea. She was adopted and taken to Valdez, Alaska, where she spent her formative years. Johnson earned an MFA in Visual Studies from PNCA. She’s currently an MFA candidate in Poetry at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Her work has been published in: Cirque: A Literary Journal, Nervous Breakdown, The Rio Grande Review, Whiskey Island Magazine, Switchback, The Dunes Review, NECK Press, and other journals. She was a MacDowell Colony Fellow in 2018. Johnson currently writes and creates art in Portland, OR.




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