NEW PUBLISHED POEM THANKS TO MELANIE AT SILVER BIRCHES PRESS
My Lockdown Mask
by Carolyn O’Connell
I’ve not walked through the woods with you
heard the chime of bluebells, or passed
the garden where the wooden dinosaur rises
over the young trees planted last year.
I’ve not had hugs from you or sat at your table
while you prepared dinner, your girls
winding a path of chatter through the house
as you juggle being teacher, mother, and daughter.
Enclosed like a vestal in some far temple:
a hostage in a blue mask to the Pandemic God;
as the sun wakens earlier each morning
and others congregate below my window
like the blackbirds chattering in the hedge.
My mask sits unworn for everything’s delivered
and I’m seen only on the video of my computer
it’s the window of my Anchorite’s cell
where friends appear seeking my words.
While you in a handmade mask travel to teach
to children who’d rather be…
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