Time in a Time of Pandemic

by Mell McDonnell

Threads and spools 
runs river-like— 
in silver oxbows 

makes moat about the house 

puddles, then 


Overflows moat
floods pool
breaks breakwater
runs, runnels, tunnels under
plunges over
rocks, falls
to maelstrom’s
faster, deeper
sides slick as
oiled glass
deeper, deeper
hang tight
branch, bow.

No, let go.

A feather
floats upward—

here’s Alice’s pool of tears
warm, salty
swim leisurely
in Alice’s company:
the  mouse,
the duck,
the dog,
the dodo.


Up from salt pool,
drops pearl from forearms,
drip from fingertips
to springtime’s garden—
deepest and deeper green—
time’s vine twines,
moves the moment,

warps and bends toward
summer’s reckoning.

Mell McDonnell is a person of several careers–as an instructor in English at the University of New Orleans, as a freelance financial writer, and as marketing/public relations director for the Colorado Shakespeare Festival, University of Colorado, Boulder.  She is a member of the Denver Women’s Press Club and Lighthouse Writers’ Workshop. Ms. McDonnell’s poetry appears in The Silver Edge (Leaping Berylians Society, Denver), Third Wednesday (Ann Arbor), and The Road Not Taken: The Journal of Formal Poetry. Sabiyha Prince is an anthropologist, artist, and author based in Washington, DC.  Her books and essays explore urban change and African American culture, and her paintings and photo collages grapple with memory, identity, kinship and inequality.

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