Sometimes the softest things break the bones of twilight. I watch the rain goose bump the street from the window over the porch. Blue-black flood flashing with tiny yellow crowns— the sodium-vapor glow of streetlights catching the splashdown of droplets. Neither taillights nor high beams will-o-the-wisp through the downpour. No life other than the traffic signal muttering its colors to the rippling gutters. They say that solitude can be hard— by which they mean difficult. It’s more soft than anything else—a blood-buzz jacket easily worn and quietly warming the shoulders like the memory of another’s breath.
Dane Hamann edits textbooks for a publisher in Chicago’s southwest suburbs. He received his MFA in Creative Writing from Northwestern University, serving as the poetry editor of TriQuarterly for over five years. His book, A Thistle Stuck in the Throat of the Sun, is forthcoming from Kelsay Books in 2021.