It is a year that’s gone missing.
Day by day, week by week it has left us wondering
where it went , so quickly and so
relentlessly slowly all at the same time.
Measured out in the life-stages of the virus
and our frightened responses; closed, opened, surge, retreat,
half opened, half closed, mutations and variants.
All old words put to new use. Suspicions,
resentments, conspiracies, piety, and confusion have
tumbled through our streets and our homes.
We are not all the one in the way we greet this.
In how we can greet it. The masked up
and the defiantly mask-less, the resigned and the angry,
the contained and the hungry, the bored and the sad.
Some muddle through clumsily, other are just not able for it,
and the fog of despair creeps in and settles into every small fold
of their being. There to stay. Not counted in the monotonous
daily tally of deaths and infections, hospital beds and ICU numbers,
but there, hidden in plain sight, just as surely.