COVID-19 Has Brought Me Back – Part I

There’s hardly anything I can do right now because of COVID-19. I can’t be around family and friends. I can’t eat inside restaurants. I can’t go to the gym. That one’s really not as relevant since I didn’t go to the gym before COVID-19…

But I might go to the gym if I could!

I can’t go to the grocery store whenever I want–I have to go to the first hour that’s set aside for us seniors in order to avoid the hordes of people. I can’t go shopping in a store without concern. I can’t teach in a classroom.

We left school for Spring Break this past school year. We knew there were issues with this new virus that was creeping through the world. But we never realized that we would not return to the school building after Spring Break. We never realized that we would begin using new phrases and new behaviors. Social distancing. Physical distancing. Shelter at home. Shelter in place. Flatten the curve. You need to unmute. You need to mute. This isn’t remote or distance learning; it’s emergency learning. Maskers. Anti-maskers. Essential workers. Only 3% will die. Be aware of your privilege. Zoom.

Zoom classes. Zoom meetings. Zoom backgrounds. Zoom concerts. Zoom theater. Zoom-Zoom-Zoom!

So… I’ve been sheltering at home since the middle of March. It’s now the beginning of August. Four and a half months. And what have I accomplished in that time? What constructive things have I done in four and a half months? Actually, very little. But I’ll leave that discussion for another blog post.

Over the next few days, I want to talk about what I did accomplish so far during this COVID-19 pandemic while I have spent hours and hours by myself, shut away from everyone except my sweet kitty cat, Gigi.

I preface this list of accomplishments with a caveat. I spent a great deal of time sleeping, watching television, crying, and being depressed. But the secret is to get back up and go on. And I did, again and again.

There are several things that I have not done for many years. Creative things. Things I have loved and then put aside, not completely forgotten, but left along the way. I picked up some of those things and examined them, and remembered them, and loved them–again.

I wrote poetry again.

At the end of March, I saw that April is considered National Poetry Month by the Academy of American Poets. America’s Poet Laureate, Joy Harjo, suggested that Americans read a poem a day during April as one way to celebrate. I decided that I would try to write a poem a day during April as a way to celebrate. I didn’t accomplish a poem every day, but I did write several. Here are a few examples:

I Cry

Why do you cry?
Said they.
I cry for the losses--
Those that have been
And those to come.
Said I.

When will the tears stop?
Said they.
Said I.

--Dawn Behrens
The Plague

The sun shines, but
The world is dark.
A plague has crushed
The caring heart.

To save the young.
The old must pay
And sacrifice
To save the day.

Are failing now
According to
The great god Dow.

But will it really
Be all right
If elderly
Give up the fight?

Or will the plague
Just worsen then
And pit the young
Against their kin?

--Dawn Behrens
Beggar’s Choice

Beggars can’t be choosers.
What a sad refrain.
As if the thing we really need
Is what we shouldn’t gain.

You lost your job? On food stamps?
You think that you deserve
A soda or some ice cream?
Oh, wow, you’ve got some nerve!

The virus means you school at home.
You have no internet?
Won’t graduate, my friend. Too bad!
Requirements were not met.

You should have thought of money
And planned and skimped and saved.
Don’t make enough to put some back?
Then some things must be waived.

You can’t be choosy about your life
Unless you have the funds.
A beggar’s only choice can be
Absolutely none.

--Dawn Behrens
Sing Me a Song

Sing me a song to remind me
How strong and resilient we are.
Sing me a song to prepare me
To respond to what the virus brings.
Sing me a song to comfort me
Amid the mounting stress.
Sing me a song to assure me
That everyone is doing their part.
Sing me a song to amaze me
About all the heroes during this time.
Sing me a song to delight me
At those sharing laughter and joy.
Sing me a song to renew me
So I can keep going.
Sing me a song to guide me
To the best actions.
Sing me a song to soothe me
When fear threatens to overcome.
Sing me a song to wake me
To what I can do for a positive future
Once we can go out again…

--Dawn Behrens

The secret is to get back up and go on. And I did, again and again.

About grandawn

I live in Stillwater, Oklahoma, USA. I have three wonderful grandchildren. I am a teacher, writer, actor, singer. . . and whatever else I can manage.
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4 Responses to COVID-19 Has Brought Me Back – Part I

  1. granny1947 says:

    For some reason I cannot read part two!!!

    • grandawn says:

      granny1947 – Sorry! I had to delete it. It had a couple of videos on it that weren’t cooperating. I deleted while I try to figure out how to fix the issue.

  2. granny1947 says:

    What lovely poems.
    I am so impressed.
    Try coming to South Africa.
    Here, the government has banned cigarettes an alcohol.
    Everything has been done with a complete lack of logic.
    And, the corruption has become mind boggling.

    • grandawn says:

      Thank you, granny1947! When I write poetry, I remember how much I enjoy it.
      Oh, my dear! So sorry you’re dealing with corruption, too! Sending love and hugs…

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