“Civil twilight” By Terri Witek

… the limit at which … illumination is sufficient, under good weather conditions, for terrestrial objects to be clearly distinguished.
—U.S. Naval Observatory

At 6° under speak only with kindness.
At 12° trust buoys to gather the port.
At 18° swing doubt through its usual cold orbit.
Let a scratch in a song be love’s cough in the dark.
Who arched the bridge to this island of flare-ups?
Which is the key to the hotel of dismay?
Nests blunt the junctions between river and ocean.
I suppose we have done with our mutual heat.
As horizons melt into more vivid disclaimers
or choose from a shoreline’s stubbed-out streets,
let go the gold ways you thought nothing then nothing.
Think nothing forever when you get to my name
.
________________________________________

“who arched the bridge to this island of flare-ups”- opens up myriad possibilities as all words do. Words are born and ripen only to fall .Their music rings like smoke rings ,each of the rings on top of the lower rings .”On this island of flare-ups “ ,the body is consciousness ,flaring up intermittently .The flare-ups do not matter to the sea of consciousness which laps on its shores but there is a bridge which arches over the vastness of the silence. The hotel of dismay is where I would like to stay but where is the key , marooned as I am in this island .From here my eyes stretch to the distant horizon and nests blunt the junctions at the estuary where the twilight wipes out the distinctions between the sea and the river .As we have done with our mutual heat .Horizons are stubbed out streets as they melt into more vivid disclaimers, saying they do not belong to the island and they do not own responsibility for the little island of consciousness. In the end let go the gold ways you thought nothing and think nothing for ever as you enter the night.

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