Covid 19

by Jenny Middleton

Cut a year to cloth
and faces to patchwork –
hemming breath beneath
a stitch-work of masks hanging
like forlorn sheets
queuing on washing lines
blown by muffled speech
between distant poles.

The virus, a ragged spectre,
spiking the air, unseen
and threading its wheezy
spoors at our skin.

And whole days bound by a string
of statistics peddling
us to the margins of empty streets
whittling our interactions
to cards tapped and slithered
between blue gloves
and Perspex, cold as pebbles
battered by a turning tide.

Shot high as December stars,
a vaccine punctuates
the closing year with a firework ellipsis
blazing at our arms,
injected and alive with blood’s
red dot of hope. 

Jenny Middleton has written poetry throughout her life. Some of this is published in printed anthologies or on online poetry sites, including ‘The Blue Nib’. Jenny is a working mum and writes whenever she can  amid the fun and chaos of family life. She lives in London with her husband, two children and two very lovely, crazy cats. Nancy Andrews is an artist living outside of Philadelphia. Self taught in photography, she has been perfecting her images for over 15 years. Her subjects include abstracts, images inspired by nature, and observations of the world around her. Along with photography, she spends her days teaching art to little ones, playing ukulele and romping with her two little pups.

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