Issue > Poetry
John Sibley Williams

John Sibley Williams

John Sibley Williams is the author of nine poetry collections, most recently Disinheritance. A nine-time Pushcart nominee and winner of various awards, John serves as editor of The Inflectionist Review. Publications include Yale Review, Atlanta Review, Prairie Schooner, Midwest Quarterly, Sycamore Review, Massachusetts Review, Columbia, Third Coast, and Poetry Northwest.

The World in Reverse Is Still the World


Hands trace breath: magnificent
winter plume, an oil refinery at dusk,
a forest fire before any houses go missing.

Then all the houses go missing. Night
arrives yet the earth doesn't cease being
broken into, one energy converted into
another, made useful for us. Still children,
in a sense, we shape the cold in our mouths
into ovals & blow. Magnificent. My hands hold
& hold & hold onto the emptiness between them.

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