#FlattenTheCurve: Proceed with Caution by Connie Post

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Assume
everything is contaminated

assume every surface
you touch
holds an invisible illness

you can spread it
without knowing

you are asymptomatic
but everyone
turns away

they can tell
that fear mutates
as quickly as a virus

the earth
whispered in your ear
long ago
“I will find you
I will find a way
to tell you when I’ve had
too much”

so you spend your days
looking for your own
antibodies
you search for them
in the soil
where you know
you will someday return

you sanitize your thoughts

you don’t say anything to anyone
but you’ve had a sore throat
for fourteen days

the earth is having trouble breathing

there are no more ventilators

 

 

Connie Post served as Poet Laureate of Livermore, California (2005 to 2009). Her work has appeared in Calyx, One, River Styx, Slipstream, Spoon River Poetry Review, Valparaiso Poetry Review, The Slippery Elm, The Pedestal Magazine, and Verse Daily. Her Awards include the 2018 Liakoura Award the 2016 Crab Creek Review Poetry Award and the Caesura award. Her first full length Book, Floodwater,  won the Lyrebird Award. Her second full length book, Prime Meridian,  was released January 3, 2020; both published by Glass Lyre Press.

#FlattenTheCurve: Living the days of Corona by Connie Post

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The numbers change
by the hour
I check the web site
too often

I tell myself not to
watch the news
all the time

I wipe down my counter
instead

after dinner
I find a new graph
on the trajectory of deaths
in my region

I watch the curve spike
and see small images of people
falling off the back

like that scene in
Titanic
when everyone
fell off the ship

some to the ocean
some to the decks below

some plummeting
some holding on
some lonely
when the water
froze their stories in time

I try to sleep
all my meditation songs
fall below my bed

someone is being infected
someone is short of breath
someone remembers a prayer
they said when they were young

 

 

Connie Post served as Poet Laureate of Livermore, California (2005 to 2009). Her work has appeared in Calyx, One, River Styx, Slipstream, Spoon River Poetry Review, Valparaiso Poetry Review, The Slippery Elm, The Pedestal Magazine, and Verse Daily. Her Awards include the 2018 Liakoura Award the 2016 Crab Creek Review Poetry Award and the Caesura award. Her first full length Book, Floodwater,  won the Lyrebird Award. Her second full length book, Prime Meridian,  was released January 3, 2020; both published by Glass Lyre Press.

#FlattenTheCurve: COVID 19 Shelter in Place by Connie Post

coronavirusBig

Don’t get me wrong
The corona virus is
making its way through the world
with its own fury

at night I lay awake
and shudder about
all the suffering
my daughter keeps coughing
and I don’t settle into sleep until dawn

but there is something else happening
behind the scenes
a friend you haven’t heard from in a while
reaches out and asks if you are okay

people smile at the grocery store
while not touching
Baseball games and concerts are cancelled
but the poets still write

I watch the same movie four times
with my grandson

we stay in more
remember a long-ago vacation
and make popcorn with real butter

we enjoy every morsel of pancakes
and a sandwich with the crust cut off

The virus
how long will it stay with us
how long will we remain
both distant
and isolated
while the earth
shows us the way

 

 

Connie Post served as Poet Laureate of Livermore, California (2005 to 2009). Her work has appeared in Calyx, One, River Styx, Slipstream, Spoon River Poetry Review, Valparaiso Poetry Review, The Slippery Elm, The Pedestal Magazine, and Verse Daily. Her Awards include the 2018 Liakoura Award the 2016 Crab Creek Review Poetry Award and the Caesura award. Her first full length Book, Floodwater,  won the Lyrebird Award. Her second full length book, Prime Meridian,  was released January 3, 2020; both published by Glass Lyre Press.

#FlattenTheCurve: Guidelines in a Pandemic by Connie Post

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Don’t touch anything
not the doorknob
nor elevator button
or the jagged space
between
your cleaved lungs

wear a mask
to protect others
wear a mask
to hide your cyanotic self
the blue of your lips
the exact hue
of the ocean
we’ve smothered

don’t let the
dead whale’s carcass
float too close
to your bed

the small bits of plastic
inside the remains
will remind you
of dying
with plastic in your body

as if they
were trying to tell
their own story

and the body bags
washing up to shore
were not our own

 

 

Connie Post served as Poet Laureate of Livermore, California (2005 to 2009). Her work has appeared in Calyx, One, River Styx, Slipstream, Spoon River Poetry Review, Valparaiso Poetry Review, The Slippery Elm, The Pedestal Magazine, and Verse Daily. Her Awards include the 2018 Liakoura Award the 2016 Crab Creek Review Poetry Award and the Caesura award. Her first full length Book, Floodwater,  won the Lyrebird Award. Her second full length book, Prime Meridian,  was released January 3, 2020; both published by Glass Lyre Press.