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Turkish Twilight

Rich Landers

In new surroundings—Istanbul
or a stretch of desert--
I didn’t realize where I was,
but the baggage man pointed me
toward the taxi line, and nearby
the strange script of newspaper headlines
hung from the street kiosk
had all the pleasure of the sun
shining through from the east. If you travel
far enough, east becomes west
and the sun makes the same shadow
as it rises and falls on history’s tangle.
Then through dust and flat boulevards,
above the trees a child flies a kite,
buildings huddle in the rush of traffic.
A string between the kite and a hand,
the tail holds its place in the twilight,
and people raise their hands to heaven
for bread and another day.

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