This is now an archive site.
Please see JL Williams' new website at  Thanks!

Air overhangs them, heavier than fire by as much as water’s weight is lighter than earth."  Ovid, Metamorphoses


Links to some recent publications:

Short Story Bullet published in the first edition of Fractured West

Scottish PEN PENning Water

Caught in the Net CITN Featured Poet August 2010

Transit Station Performance of original melopoesie (music and poetry composition) 'Pteria' with James Iremonger at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, June 2010.

Transit Station Artist Page

Transit Station Blog Page with Video of Pteria Performance

Awarded the Edwin Morgan Travel Bursary 2009 
from the Scottish Arts Trust, JL Williams spent 
the month of September 2009 on the Aeolian Isles 
writing a collection inspired by Ovid's Metamorphoses.

Also in September Williams' "Rare Opportunity"                          was the Scottish Arts Council's Featured Poem.


Williams looks at C. P. Cavafy's "Waiting for the Barbarians"
in the Scottish Poetry Library's Reading Room.

JL Williams was born in New Jersey and studied at Wellesley College and on the MLitt in Creative Writing at the University of Glasgow.  Her poetry has been published in journals including, Aesthetica, The Red Wheelbarrow, Chanticleer, Cutting Teeth, The Wolf and The Howler, Orbis, Poetry Salzburg Review, Poetry WalesGutter, Brand, Metropolis, Salamander CoveShearsman and Stand.

Since moving to Edinburgh in 2001 she has been active both as a poet and in the performing arts as a director and producer, most recently of the performance art cabaret Neue Liebe.  She was awarded a grant from the Scottish Arts Council in 2006 for a poetry collaboration entitled chiaroscuro pentimenti with composer Martin Parker and artist Anna Chapman.

JL Williams plays in the bands Laertes, Why Are You Crying? and Horsebreaker.  She is on the editorial board of Brown Williams Journal and can also be found on the Live Literature funded list of Scottish Book Trust Authors.                                                         



November's Song

They took her down to the river,

held her mouth so it could take pouring in.


Light through leaves, 

a day like this.


Success can't be defined by whether

the milk comes out of the milkweed's

squeezed bud.  Or downy messages.  Honey

from the honeysuckle's prick

sometimes touches the tongue.


It doesn't always mean 

that someone has failed.

To break can be 

a way of loosing the chest.


A kind of music was invented on that day – 

of scattered leaves,

the bashed song of her hair.

2010 JL Williams

JL Williams Poetry

Please get in touch for more information regarding poetry, readings, performance, voiceover work and collaboration.