I am most defined by this hatred of fire escapes
and the concession of sorting waves by their direction.
Nobody leaves the night in pieces anymore.
Why not strike out for all shores at once
with the honest ferocity of attempt
and climb from amnesia
wearing only socks, carrying a net?
I concede there is no true nudity left.
I make love dressed in all the world’s love making.
The pieces of other bodies combine perfectly
into my outline.
So I try to climb as far from myself as stairs allow.
I’m huffing by the third floor.
The railings are rusted. It’s always raining.
And the roof will only be so high.
John Sibley Williams is the author of six chapbooks, winner of the HEART Poetry Award, and finalist for the Pushcart and Rumi Poetry Prizes. He has served as Acquisitions Manager of Ooligan Press and Publicist for Three Muses Press and holds an MFA in Creative Writing and MA in Book Publishing. Some of his over 200 previous or upcoming publications include: The Evansville Review, RHINO, Rosebud, Ellipsis, Flint Hills Review, and Poetry Quarterly.