Poem for a Pandemic: A Nightmare and a Blessing

Antique Typewriter

I confess I’m afraid.

Afraid of the dreaded zombie virus

That stalks our streets and spaces.

I’m fighting it, staying home, washing hands,

Sanitizing everything.

Missing the theater,

Dinners with friends,

Long coffee dates.

Instead, long days at home,

Phone calls to keep up with friends,

Long Zoom meetings for business and pleasure.

Nighttimes of anxiety insomnia.


And no excuses for not working on The Project.


A poet friend said it’s like having

A long-term residency.

And every day, as I survey

The long hours ahead,

I know that some of them

Can be devoted to writing

As well as simply reading for pleasure.

Novels, history, poetry.


Grateful for my books.

Some day, maybe soon, I’ll finish this beast

I’ve worked on off and on for years.

I’ve made progress in just a month.

Fine-tuned the contents.

Written new essays.

Gathered up my work

Published in other places

Around the cavernous internet. .

Together: Will they create

A coherent, meaningful package

That might inspire another writer,

Or interest another reader?


What’s the life of a writer, anyway?

It demands moments, no, hours, of solitude.

It’s not writing in restaurants or noisy cafes.

It’s just words, words, words, as If in a dream.

This time of enforced solitude is a writer’s dream

Within a nightmare.


7 Comments on “Poem for a Pandemic: A Nightmare and a Blessing”

  1. Melinda Longford Power says:

    This is such a wonderful poem! I love the ending.


  2. Beth says:

    Beautiful! I feel like I know you more. So enjoyed this!


  3. Deborah says:

    Great sharing of what others are also feeling and thinking, along with a reminder to not waste this time.


  4. Geri Lawhon says:

    I do not call it a nightmare, I call it Ground Hog Day. Stuck in this endless circle with no way out. Hope for both of us it will end soon. Great post, thanks.


  5. Corona will go eventually, your wonderful poem will stay.


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