Roll Call. A poem by Carol Parris Krauss

Everyone was experiencing bizarre
dreams, and I was no exception. Every
night, I woke 3-4 times, startled from my sleep.
But I couldn’t quite garner what was happening
in my dreams. I could only discern bits and blurs.
Try as hard as I could. Nothing for the first 3-4
weeks. Then a snippet. It looked like a letter
left in the rain. Blurred words on a scroll. Each
morning, I would gather a new piece to my
nocturnal puzzle.Then one Sunday, I awoke
with a full reckoning. It was a twitter feed, but
instead of tweets, a list of every person who
had passed from the virus. Starting with
Patricia Dowd. Each night, new names were
added to the top of the list. But at the bottom
of the list, the same thing appeared night after
night. A signature in black Sharpie. Barely legible.
A familiar Scrawl. Seen on bills, checks, and now
roll call for Covid.
Carol Parris Krauss is a mother, teacher, and poet from the Tidewater region of Virginia. She likes to incorporate nature into her poems, even when the poem is not about nature. In 2018, she was honored to be recognized by the University of Virginia Press as a Best New Poet. Her work can be found in various online and print venues such as Twist in Time, Amsterdam Quarterly, the South Carolina Review, and New Verse News. More of her work can be viewed at .

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