Hope in a time of Covid-19

Pandemic Poetry

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It hurts to breathe
as if I inhaled a cloud
a cloud
of fiberglass dust,
it hurts to bear witness
to this constant stream
this constant stream
of update upon terrible update,
a news headline folded
then folded
and folded again
until its size eclipses the moon.

It hurts to hear
the people singing
from balconies
over the Venice canals
knowing there’s no one
coming to remove
their dead
from their homes.

It hurts to feel so alone,
isolated
in the stillness
of a moral choice
between holding a hand
and not holding a hand,
between hiding
and surviving
and not surviving.

But pain exists
as a warning
and a signal flare
like a comet
visible during daylight,
saying these senses serve
as reminders
of a simple intricacy
shared by human experience.

Be thankful
of this daily awakening,
this sensation
of sunlight warming
closed eyelids,
the dog sleeping
curled against your leg,
phone notifications
alerting you
to your mother checking in.

Be hopeful
that today’s inconveniences
guarantee tomorrow’s comforts
of houses unemptied,
filling with scents —
morning coffee brewing,
a shower of steam
and lingering floral shampoos,
last night’s seared chicken
still clinging to its pan
left dirty on the stove,

while the world moves
like a grandmother
pacing the halls,
waiting for her daughter
to call
sometimes all we need
is to know there’s someone else
listening to us weep
on the other end of the line,
reminding us
that every hurt
passes like a breath
we were never capable of holding.

Written by

Provocative truth teller, author of 14 poetry collections. Cat dad. Dog dad. Currently working from Portland, Oregon. Learn more at: Jaysizemore.com.

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