Ocracoke Night Magic
by Ann Christine Tabaka
Night falls early on the island with no pollution from light
to interfere. The blackest of black. The only illumination
a diamond-studded firmament, with a brilliant pathway
dividing it in two. The Milky Way is visible arching
northeast to southwest. A magical experience standing on
windswept beach. Salt breezes waft inland from the ocean.
Many a crystal night shooting stars dance across the sky,
carrying wishes as they vanish in a wink. Moonlight
flickering off the surface as the sea rises and falls with each
breath. Froth caressing the edges in lacy patterns reflecting
the lunar effluence. The sound of waves crashing on the
shore echo through the ebon night, as an eerie wind whistles
through the marsh grass, conjuring up images of long-lost
souls. Ghosts of pirates that once made Ocracoke Island
their stronghold, walk there still. Emotions rising with each
heartbeat, a flight of wonderment takes hold. Warm moist sand
creeps between my toes as I walk along the dunes. I can
stand there forever looking upward at the magic that enfolds
me. A place of wonder and delight takes my imagination
to some unknown place from where I may never return.
The night was meant for this.
Previously published by TreeHouse Arts (November 2018).
PHOTO: Low clouds pass over a star-filled sky behind the Ocracoke Lighthouse on Ocracoke Island, Outer Banks, North Carolina. Photo by Matt Claiborne, used by permission. Read more about Ocracoke Island at TravelandLeisure.com.
NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: My husband and I have been visiting Ocracoke Island, North Carolina, for 26 years. We consider it our “home away from home.” The autumn nights are amazing with innumerable stars and the Milky Way visible. We love to go to the quiet beach after dark and watch for shooting stars to wish upon. It is a magical place with so much history and lure.
AUTHOR’S PHOTO CAPTION: With my son Damon on the ferry crossing from Hatteras Island to Ocracoke Island, North Carolina.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Ann Christine Tabaka was nominated for the 2017 Pushcart Prize in Poetry. She is the winner of Spillwords Press 2020 Publication of the Year, and her bio is featured in the “Who’s Who of Emerging Writers 2020,” published by Sweetycat Press. Internationally published, she has won poetry awards from numerous publications. Her work has been translated into Sequoyah-Cherokee Syllabics and into Spanish. She is the author of 12 poetry books and has recently been published in several micro-fiction anthologies and short story publications. A resident of Delaware, where she lives with her husband and four cats, she loves gardening and cooking. Her most recent credits are The American Writers Review; The Phoenix; Burningword Literary Journal; Muddy River Poetry Review; The Write Connection; The Scribe, North of Oxford, Pomona Valley Review, Page & Spine, West Texas Literary Review, The Hungry Chimera, Sheila-Na-Gig, Foliate Oak Review, The Stray Branch, The McKinley Review, and Fourth & Sycamore. Visit her at annchristinetabaka.com and on her Amazon author’s page.