The Distant Wild, by Joshua Eric Williams

The Distant Wild, by Joshua Eric Williams


starless night / missing / what i never had

SKU: 978-1-944252-11-3 Category: Tags: , ,

Joshua Williams’ hybrid poems open into the space between reader and page, asking us to hold very still, breathe softly, and turn the page. For lovers of modern haiku and its relatives; for readers who cannot turn away from a voice speaking its own, very particular, truth.


Before the clearer memories of youth, 
the earliest impression of my life 
consists of you cutting a baby tooth 
out of my head with an old pocket knife. 
I squirmed beneath the pressure on my jaw,
but I gave in as you began to cry. 
Was it the blood coating my lips you saw? 
Was it my fear I saw in your eye? 
Until you died, I figured you were mad. 
Instead, your heart breaking, the tears that came, 
had you mourning a life you never had, 
but now that you are gone, I harbor shame. 
When they lowered your casket into your grave, 
like you, I cried for all I could not save. 

                hovering kite
          the patch of wildflowers
           over my father’s grave 

magnolia blooms— 
reading the same bills 
my father had