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Plague Poems – The Hundred-and-Twenty-First Week

A year ago
we celebrated
our independence
from the plague
though this year
there is nothing
(not even independence
from the plague)
worth celebrating.

*

Fireworks are fitting
for there is no better way
to commemorate
an exploding country
than with explosions.

*

Should you find yourself
attending a gathering
your hosts will be grateful
if you show up with
cold beer or chips
paper products or bratwurst
your famous potato salad
or a box of popsicles
but none of those present
will be particularly grateful
should you bring the plague.

*

Perhaps
in some future year
we shall be worthy
of days of celebration
but in the present year
we should only observe
days of mourning.

*

Editorial Note: This is a collection of Plague Poems written between July 2, 2022 and July 8, 2022.

They were initially posted online on Twitter at @plaguepoems and Instagram at @plague_poems.

Throughout the duration of this crisis new poems will be posted regularly at that Twitter account, they will then be collected and reposted here in weekly increments.

*

And though it should
in our stomachs we all know
that this time
will not change anything.

*

In the absence
of hope
you will discover
that anger
can sustain you
at least until such a time
as you are able
to recover hope.

*

I appreciate the invitation
really, I do
but between the plague
and the mass shootings
and the price of gas
I think I would rather
just stay home and read.

*

Though the crises we face
are distinct in significant ways
they are all of them exacerbated
by our failure
by our ongoing failure
to care for one another.

*

The experts say
pay attention
to the waste water
but even if you do not
pay attention
to the waste water
you can still tell
we’re in deep shit.

*

If the doomsayers
did not exist
we would have to invent them
if only so that our worries
could sound calm and rational
in comparison.

*

Plagues
do not last
forever
though they
certainly last
for longer
than they should.

*

Every woebegone gesture
towards future historians
is an expression of a deep hope
for to believe that there will be
future historians
who shall someday be able
to look back and judge our era
is to believe that the future
will be stable enough
to keep producing historians.

*

I hope your flight gets canceled
and the restaurant is full
I pray the tour skips your city
and that the movie sells out
I want you to miss the party
and for your classes to go online
I know you are living
like the pandemic is over
so I hope your bad luck
keeps you at home.

*

With the batteries removed
from the smoke detector
and the air conditioner
blasting cold air
it is easy to comfortably stay
in a burning building
at least until
the flames reach your room.

*

There is a world
in which BA5
is the name of a droid
resembling a wheeled trashcan,
it beeps and gets into mischief
while assisting the brave heroes,
the devoted fanbase
truly loves that silly robot.

How much nicer it would be
to live in a world
where BA5
is the name of a droid.

*

We are done
with the plague
and yet it seems
that the plague
is not quite done
with us.

*

Though I am heartened
to see that you
are wearing a mask
I will admit
that I would feel even better
were you wearing it
on your face
and not around your wrist.

*

How easy it is to declare
that it is impossible
(simply impossible)
to avoid the plague
when you cannot be bothered
to suffer the inconveniences
avoiding the plague requires.

*

Though it certainly feels
that the shore is out of sight
and that we are adrift
on a shoddy raft
battered by unyielding waves
you must remember
that we are not lost at sea
but floating in a wave pool
that we are unwilling to exit.

*

So long as you can still say
that you
have a very bad feeling about this
at least you know
that you have not yet lost
your capacity to feel.

*

*

Plague Poems…the following week

Plague Poems…the first week

Plague Poems…the full list

About Z.M.L

“I do not believe that things will turn out well, but the idea that they might is of decisive importance.” – Max Horkheimer librarianshipwreck.wordpress.com @libshipwreck

One comment on “Plague Poems – The Hundred-and-Twenty-First Week

  1. Pingback: Plague Poems – The Hundred-and-Twentieth Week | LibrarianShipwreck

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