In the year 2020, man and women are still alive
even giving each other a high five,
Then along came a virus called corona
For some it knew ya.
It was called novel
Many at the feet of CDC did grovel.
You must wear a mask to cover your face
in every business place
Yet the virus continued its pace.
The Governor’s edict included the words: “if able”
A phrase that seems to have been swept under the table.
My body cried out, A mask you require?
Same body without desire
Replied: No I cannot
so a mask will not be bought.
It’s severe claustrophobia
So now I suffer discrimination
for this there is no medication.
Don’t want or need and can’t buy more pills
need to pay other bills.
Am not now or in the past have been sick
This human no virus did pick.
My heart hurts to realize
There is no business I am able to patronize.
Claustrophobia is a definable disease
The code F40-240 can be found with ease.
People with asthma have the same issue
as do allergy sufferers, please hand me a tissue.
JANE G. JOHNSON
A woman with rape-colored skin
offers her body’s light-brown blackness
as a Confederate monument,
America’s story reconsidered.
Her black ancestors, owned by
her white ancestors, built the elegance
of plantations in the Old South,
in Tennessee and Virginia.
Now the bronze and stone statues must go,
those monuments that celebrate
power and lust and brutality,
that sugar-coated slavery,
and Jim Crow and its bigotry.
JEFF STAPLES, after Caroline Randall Williams and The New York Times Sunday Review
I hear the church bells ringing
From above the angels are singing
Our world has righted again
We are free
And our prayers of thanks
Rise up to heaven
Echoes of the Boston & Maine
relics now frozen in stone
like the trilobites that roamed Permian seas:
bore holes scarring the cuts
moss-covered rings of concrete
where once stood signal towers,
Stonehenge for the Industrial Age.
here a stone foundation
loading ramp? fuel depot?
the granite does not say.
arrow straight these paths
towering over the swamps
boring single-mindedly through bedrock -
game trails for roaring behemoths
that once bore New Hampshire granite south.
the only tracks here now
left by deer
and the occasional hiker
and his dog.