Coronavirus

All over the world

Right now

People just like

You and me

Have begun to

Live in fear

Of our own

Invisible, creeping

Spinning, spiny, tiny, inevitable invisible crowns

Empty shelves

Where once cellophaned signifiers of

All that can be wiped away–

Canned food, pasta, string cheese, milk

Fomite transmission

You and me

Gone

Don’t worry, Darling

He took all our thorny little crowns

Smoothed each out

Like a girl braiding her sister’s hair

Singing some sort of song about

A proper crown for the One True King

Come to save us all.

Uriah

He has found a little stream, dips his feet into the water away from all the others. When I ask him about all he has lost, he shrugs as if to say

Lost wife

Lost country

Lost king

Lost friends

But he has new friends now, even among the children and grandchildren and great grandchildren of his erstwhile wife.

He recites these my-life-for-yours words as if the man who wrote them had written them for him…

….He that is first in his own cause seemeth just; but his neighbour cometh and searcheth him. [18] The lot causeth contentions to cease, and parteth between the mighty. [19] A brother offended is harder to be won than a strong city: and their contentions are like the bars of a castle. [20] A man’s belly shall be satisfied with the fruit of his mouth; and with the increase of his lips shall he be filled. [21] Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof. [22] Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing , and obtaineth favour of the Lord . [23] The poor useth intreaties; but the rich answereth roughly. 24] A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly:

…there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.

Let us wait here, darling

Until he comes.

Close

Days before the Passover lamb, John the Baptist mends her long robe, pours oil over wounds with words which make sense only to the dead, faith the fire we warm our hands by,

Let me in, let me in says the moon and the wind, let me in to the stillness of everlasting, as even now the children begin to

Lay down their outer garments, their palm branches, as we all sing, hosanna, blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.

We are close now, so close .

Eulogizing Joe

Methuselah lived 969 years, which means that at just over 100, my grandfather was a spring chicken, as lifespans go. That notwithstanding he got a lot done. Married, participated in at least three wars, fathered children, buried some. Lost a wife, found another, called me his oldest unmarried granddaughter for as long as it applied.

I loved him in all his iterations, in all his familiar imperfections, but I know Someone who loves him more.

The One who is the Road

The All and Only

Road Home.

Psalm 116

Carried Over

We are collectively surprised at how ephemeral the boat is, balloonish, easily punctured. As are we. I wonder if the others have drawn the same conclusions-we have become ghosts in our erstwhile stories, still haunted by the house, by the spouse, by the hope we left behind.

Only Lazarus whistles a chipper tune. Why is he so happy? Because nothing is a cool hand to lose.

Words for thirsty

We sit in the shade, it is all shade here, so incorporeal, so many of us, all waiting for a voice, for a light, for The Before The After, the now and forever, we talk of sunsets, the way the sun might send one last piercing shaft of light up through the darkening sky, faith-hope-love coming for us, they say, these men who have seen the-greatest-of-these-is-love

But when? How long until

We are irrevocably

Called to life.

Eleazar

John 11:3 KJV

[3] Therefore his sisters sent unto him, saying, Lord, behold, he whom thou lovest is sick.

In my hunger I sit with him, follow him from room to room. Marvel at his silence

He does not have to tell me what we both already know, but I trail him regardless

Want something from him

Whether it is what he saw so long ago now or what he will not say

About the days of our mutual confinement