LibrarianShipwreck

"More than machinery, we need humanity."

Plague Poems – The Hundred-and-Thirty-Fourth Week

You keep telling me
that the pandemic is over
but the more you insist
the more loudly you shout
the more furious you get
the more I believe
that the person
you are trying to convince
is not me, but you.

*

When I tell him
that I am worried
still worried about the virus
he says that I am being silly
what I should be worrying about
in this moment
is the increasing possibility
of a nuclear war
and though he may be right
this does not do very much
to make me any less worried.

*

I freely admit
that I am no Jessica Fletcher
I am nothing compared to
Holmes or Poirot or Columbo
but when it comes
to the mysterious case
of the strange cold
circulating at my workplace
I believe I know the culprit.

*

Contrary to what
your kindergarten teacher said
kindness
is not contagious
but unfortunately, the virus is.

*

Editorial Note: This is a collection of Plague Poems written between October 1, 2022 and October 7, 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.

*

Because we cannot speak
of the pandemic
as if it was a challenge
over which we triumphed
we prefer to speak
of the pandemic
as little as possible.

*

I can appreciate
that you are concerned
with what the virus
has done to our mental health
but please understand
that many of us remain concerned
with what the virus
does to the health of our brains.

*

They no longer ask
if you have had it
instead they ask
how many times
you have had it.

*

And though it makes sense
to be rather disoriented
if you look around
you will recognize
that you are not lost
you know these surroundings
you are somewhere familiar
what you need to adjust to
is this feeling of loss.

*

I wonder
is it truly becoming
more difficult
to talk about the plague
or is it just that we feel
we are running out
of new things to say about it.

*

When we finally
see each other again
after years apart
she tells me I look different
from how I once did
and before I can respond that
yes, I have changed my hair style,
she says I look like I’ve aged
not just older
but old
which I suppose
is not an inaccurate observation.

*

It is fortunate
that they do not bother
naming every new variant
for I have always struggled
with learning new names
and all of us are struggling
with preventing new variants.

*

The headache
and exhaustion
and soreness
brought on by a day
of penitent fasting
are surprisingly easy to endure
when headaches
and exhaustion
and soreness
have already become
your normal state.

*

Whenever I see a headline
that uses the term
“post-pandemic”
I make a mental note
to place another order
for masks and test-kits.

*

A stranger asked
if I had an extra mask,
she had been in a rush
to leave home and her mask
had been forgotten there,
but she said that I,
looked like the kind of person
who would have an extra one,
which I suppose she meant
as a compliment
and besides she wasn’t wrong.

*

The tree outside my window
is turning from green to red
but I am already
a full season ahead of it
and so I
am turning gray.

*

To answer your question
no, I do not
plan on wearing
this mask forever,
but then again
I do not consider
the mild inconvenience
of wearing a mask
for a fraction of the day
to constitute
wearing a mask forever.

*

In the margins
of an old notebook
I found a message
written in messy cursive
by my old self:

next week must be
the last week of these
silly poems
it has been too long already
I cannot do this much longer.

The next week
about which I was then writing
was eighty-nine weeks ago.

*

If we could
end the pandemic
by telling ourselves
that it was already over
surely it would have ended
many months ago.

*

As a shopper you know
that many businesses
encourage customers to return
there are exclusive discounts
membership deals
and punch cards that let you
buy ten to get the eleventh free
but please understand
the plague’s loyalty rewards program
is not worth joining.

*

It’s quite simple
really
if you do not speak
about the pandemic
you need not acknowledge
how horribly it has gone.

*

Someday
when historians look back
at the images of this moment
they will see the pictures
from our crowded gatherings
and they will wonder
what the hell we were thinking.

Though in fairness
many of us
are currently wondering
the same thing.

*

*

Plague Poems…the following week

Plague Poems…the first week

Plague Poems…the full list

Advertisement

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-Thirty-Fourth Week

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

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Ne'er do wells

Archive

Categories

Creative Commons License

libshipwreck

%d bloggers like this: