White Whale Review: An Online Literary Magazine Untitled Document
John Sibley Williams has an MA in Writing and has recently returned to the Boston area, where he frequently performs his poetry. He is presently compiling manuscripts composed from the last two years of traveling and living abroad. Some of his over thirty previous or upcoming publications include: The Evansville Review, Flint Hills Review, Cadillac Cicatrix, Juked, The Journal, Barnwood International Poetry, Phantasmagoria, The Alembic, Clapboard House, Southern Ocean Review, Poetic Diversity, Language and Culture, Raving Dove, Ghoti, and Red Hawk Review..

From the Current Issue
Subscribe to RSS     Share

John Sibley Williams



The lake tires of lake

and begins reflecting tree.

Her eyes shake free their calm azure.

That black dress worn often in age

tonight upon her delicate frame

compares less to night.


                 * * *


Walking these evenings

along the familiar banks of the river.

I’ve fallen in love with Autumn’s namelessness,

the unvoiced bridge

between swim and skate,

clothes morphing colors,

flesh morphing colors,

street signs rusting off single letters,

and in the letters remaining

a temporary city

winding into silent rooms,

shutters groaning like the faces of old coins.



John Sibley Williams

                 * * *


Yellow strands threaded through night.

All those sleep shapes

chipping away the wallpaper

flaking to the wet carpet

of this rented Prague flat,

where little squares of sky over brick

translate streetlights and blindfolded cathedrals

a sorrow

originally shaken as love from the clouds—

too distant and temporary

to protect their meaning.

John Sibley Williams



Rain-pregnant, the unpierced palms

of maples cup halos,

little light tricks of sun

language deems halos.

Those nibbled by worms, moths,

dribble water down upon my forehead,

what my language names restoration.


We’re just outside Vienna in the hills,

christened hills because nearby

there are higher mountains.

We’re speaking of the future

to differentiate it from the past

and our hands are tightly locked

because the earth is slipping away.

John Sibley Williams



From this courtyard window facing west,

amongst foreign flowers and crumbled stone,

America’s hands cover my eyes,

some childhood game of blindness,

where I must guess the original color

of these faded, loose floor tiles

that break beneath my step

like glass.


I am the neighbor’s dachshund

cramming his mouth with plant bits,

paper cups, cans, and old gum,

to excuse his songlessness.

I am the silver-haired German

who paces his open-draped apartment naked,

spending most of his time at the window,

looking up at a four-cornered cube of sky.






John Sibley Williams

We once spoke dreams and cried.

It was wonderful. We died.

We dreamt again and were reborn.

Songs and visions.

And our hoarse moments, blind moments,

energized the sun.

The sky expanded in all four directions beyond,

because of our ignorance.


I no longer cover my eyes

at the old man’s body.

I collect gum from the street.


Is this all that’s left

of communication and human speech?








Copyright © John Sibley Williams. White Whale Review, issue 1.2

Previous Author Prev Next Author