“When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe. One fancies a heart like our own must be beating in every crystal and cell, and we feel like stopping to speak to the plants and animals as friendly fellow mountaineers.”
What will be required of us all?
Each beating heart asks this question.
Wants to feel still useful, still calm.
I recall my grandmother telling
us she knew Spanish Flu victims. It seemed
so remote. So ancient. At least until
HIV/AIDS. Then we began to learn
the high costs of community. Each day,
someone went missing. Telltale signs were
everywhere yet it took decades to make
a dent in fear. Later on, when birds
and swine turned scary, we remained calm.
As daffodils poke from hillsides and cherry
blossoms fill the Potomac’s banks, we admire
their Monet glow from a safe distance.
Face coverings cannot obscure worried
eyes. Each day, obituaries are the top news
story. Dog walkers rein in their charges,
wonder if their owners have traveled to
foreign places. Streets turn quiet as country
lanes. Plans for everything become scraps
of paper which become diaries of our former
selves. From a closed shop doorway, a
homeless man croons: All You Need Is Love…