Distancing. A poem by Ian Parker Dodd

Alone not fibrillating, no high blood pressure
I watch the shadows of the room
clear in the coming light.
The dog does not bark.
The house is locked down.
There has been no reassessment of borders.
Nothing happens.

The curtain swished aside
signals the Sisyphean ritual,
the garden waiting to be stepped into,
the book waiting to be read
The dog waiting to be walked.

The iPad has a sudden flurry
numbering the dead
in some other country.

Downstairs the breakfast ritual
the juice, the homemade muesli
the fruit the toast, the marmalade
the Ethiopian coffee and blood pressure pills
says nothing has happened.

Through the window
cold spring sun glitters off growing brambles, weeds.
Among your roses, although four years have gone
I see you, scratched, smiling,
wiping your nose muddy with your sleeve,
as if you foretold behaviour
now required.

On the screen goggle-eyed white beings
push trolleys, spray streets,
bury bags without ceremony.
Still nothing happens.

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