01 April 2020

The sniffer

Poems in the time of Corona

An extract from Those Footsteps Behind: Around the World in 50 Poems

The sniffer 
An aircraft above Casablanca, Morocco

























 
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Magnetic Resonance Imaging: lyrics of love and loss
Those Footsteps Behind: around the world in 50 poems

30 March 2020

Waking up alive

Poems in the time of Corona


Waking up alive

I woke up alive this morning.

Chest clear, no fever,
I drank my tea
and poured slightly less milk
over slightly fewer cornflakes.

I woke up alive this morning.

With my head in my pillow,
I can hear my blood flowing;

with my headphones disconnected,
I can hear my lungs breathing

like Darth Vader.

I daren't touch my face.

I woke up alive this morning.

This should be on today's news,
announced after deaths and infections,
light relief before shortages and quarantines,

with a song and a steamy rumba
and its own commercial break.

I woke up alive this morning.

Don't tell me if I don't make it tomorrow.




Support a poet. Buy a book.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging: lyrics of love and loss
Those Footsteps Behind: around the world in 50 poems

29 March 2020

Reality fractures

Poems in the time of Corona


Reality fractures

                      I shower
                      and switch on the news.

A virus is spreading,
they say.

                      My coffee tastes good;
                      it's a fine day to write a poem.

You must stay at home,
they say.

                      It'll be a poignant piece
                      about a dog who passed away.

We have no supplies,
they say.

                      No, maybe that's too sad;
                      I'll be surprisingly funny in verse.

The doctors are sick,
they say.

                      A pangolin would be novel;
                      koalas are chic these days.

There's no time to bury the dead,
they say.

                      So now I'm searching
                      for a rhyme for marsupial.




Support a poet. Buy a book.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging: lyrics of love and loss
Those Footsteps Behind: around the world in 50 poems

27 March 2020

Brian Patten read a poem of mine

Poems in the time of Corona

Brian Patten read a poem of mine

The universe is upside-down;
Brian Patten read a poem of mine.

He may have said some words aloud
or clicked delete without a thought.
It's all the same.
Brian Patten read a poem of mine.

He wouldn't recognise my name;
it's likely that we'll never meet.
It's of no account.
Brian Patten read a poem of mine.

Now when the undertakers come
for an epitaph to adorn my tomb,
it's here and done:
Brian Patten read a poem of mine.



Support a poet. Buy a book.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging: lyrics of love and loss
Those Footsteps Behind: around the world in 50 poems