Painted over humanity

Painted over humanity
With broad breezy brushstrokes
With the life of its victims

It lives
Nestled in our lungs
Like a musty fox
Curled up in a den

As it eats away its house
It dies in there
With it landlords grey
and lifeless body

There are so many breaths
In a crowd
For it to make
New pathways with

There are so many lungs
To hide in
Until it rises in a coma
From a bed

With deaths identity
On our faces
All our memories
Eaten away

Isolated, and tomb ready
We see our hearts night
On its journey
Beyond the curtain

We reach out to grab
All the things
That are still
Available to us

All the things that we loved
Memories peeling layers
Ending here
Enduring there

All the feeling rigged up
between us – unravelling
We feel the sails falling
Blowing away in the wind

On the day of Jehovah
We will be judged
One will say to another
It was him

One will relate
How life was taken away
And some will be grateful
That life returned

Some will be born together
Some will need to find their love

Coronavirus – unwelcome guest
In the temple of our bodies
Like a cloud of gnats

Like starlings that fly in flocks
From the beast in our lungs
Grateful to avoid ignoble deaths
In the animal market, on filthy plates

Like the stars that float in space
Swirling like leaves on an endless ocean
Whose light has memories like our owwwwn
Falling through space uncorrupted

This new form of life that takes life
Zipped up around us, in its pocket
We grope out into breaths of air
To leave its dry shadow where
it tried to embrace us

Coronavirus – who set you free?
Like a flock of flies from a dung heap
Where are the legs that make you leap?
Where is the mouth that eats and eats and eats?

Are you behind me inside a man?
Are you in front of me in unsettled smoke?
If the traffic of my breath is stopped
How can I cross the road?

The security guard looks tired
As into the supermarket I go
I eat like you, I breathe like you
But alas – I cannot see you

2 thoughts on “Painted over humanity

  1. That’s one way of fighting coronavirus, or at least its psychological effects — capturing it in the realm of human imagination. This poem really seizes it as a living character, with all the furniture and aura of life … and then, just in time, in the last few lines, another character — the voice, the I/me — comes in. Not heroically, but it DOES enter the landscape to engage. That is enough for now 🙂


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