Locked Up. A poem by Marita O’Flanagan

A wicked thing has come our way
Has bedded in, just wants to stay.
It creeps about by day and night
Never lets us out of sight.
We’re lucky to be sane or thrive
As the thing’s gone into overdrive.

We’re marching up and down the street
Afraid that somebody we’ll meet.
Heaven help, if they cough or splutter
As if they greet us or dare to mutter.
Ducks and foxes come to town
With people gone into shutdown.
Now’s their chance to windowshop
The guards will hardly make them stop.
The birds are twittering with delight
They must have joined a ‘dating site!
Their songs are clearer and so sassy
Sometimes soft, romantic, classy!

Children won’t know who’s their daddy
It could be Jack or Mick or Paddy.
Cause in a mask men look the same
They’ll have to play the ‘guessing game’.
Fathers won’t know what to do
First time to tie the baby’s shoe.
Kids will drive their parents spare
To tearing out their greying hair.
Home schooling while they drink their coke
Teaching’s certainly no joke!

Mum’s kids will fatten on endless cake
As she’ll bake and bake and bake.
Not meat and veg. – Not any more
“Just eat more cake”, she’ll shout and roar,
“I’m not about to throw it out
Here dad, have some with that pint of stout.”
“Gee, I’ve had my fill already
Take it easy, take it steady.
Read a book or sow my sock
Or make the kids a nice new frock.
Do what housewives used to do.
Cant you polish my favourite shoe?”

With a mask upon our dial
We could raid a bank in single file
They’d not know who the heck we are
As we take off in our motor car
With banknotes squashed inside our jumper
Under seats or up the bumper
As high-powered jobs we had before
We may not have them anymore.
So let’s get back to olden days
Learn ancestors’ country ways!


Originally from Ennis, Co. Clare, I live in Csstlerea, Co. Roscommon. I write poetry and paint. Self-published poetry book called “Imprint on Water” for Temple St. Children Hospital. I also create personalised cards, with an emphasis on calligraphy.

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