Pipe smoke and thin strips of flypaper. Citronella. Red, swollen skin. A hesitancy of light struggles through night clouds. And where once the stars, stories. We are passing around our pasts like whiskey. Then comes the whiskey. Smooth and unquestionable myth. Three sizes larger than truth, the morning’s catch of walleye and salmon. The fight still going on in the elk head above us. Our shadows lengthening across a lawn that ends in lake, and somewhere out there in the dark, past the lake, another country.
John Sibley Williams is the author of nine poetry collections, including Controlled Hallucinations (2013) and Disinheritance (2016). A five-time Pushcart nominee and winner of the Philip Booth Award, American Literary Review Poetry Contest, Nancy D. Hargrove Editors' Prize, and Vallum Award for Poetry, John serves as editor of The Inflectionist Review and works as a literary agent. Previous publishing credits include: The Midwest Quarterly, december, Third Coast, Baltimore Review, Nimrod International Journal, Hotel Amerika, Rio Grande Review, Inkwell, Cider Press Review, Bryant Literary Review, RHINO, and various anthologies. He lives in Portland, Oregon. John was a contributor to Volume 6 of Packingtown Review.