A Poet’s Corona Journal – by Donna DeWeerd 12

Poems of Solitude

March, 2020

The crown virus is king today.
Its implications? Solitude and self-reflection.
Who will I be through this crisis?
Which “self” will control the uncontrollable?
Go to the center and ask the spirit’s nucleus — what shall I learn?
Clarity will always be paid for by regret and charity by chaos.


#1 Shell-Ter

Shell as home, little turtle,
shelter from the drip of rain,
held down by toe grip in the green grass.
find precarious perch on slippery surface.

Pull in head, cover with cowl of reminiscence
where rain fell hard on unprotected self.
Then it didn’t matter if the overhead was leaky
underfoot, acres of sloppy slushy soil.

Aged shell is hard, toughened by use and intention
Hard-lined by hard knocks and misadventures
Whither thou goest, it comes along without complaint
knows someday, more than likely, it will stand alone.


April, 2020

The crown virus is winning, wildfire burning ungoverned, grinning madly.
Solitude is losing, an addict craving the comfort of another’s nearness.
Voracious numbers bend upward with relish and downward with relief.
Maps of misery, colored bright red or blue or orange, like flames licking flesh.


#2 Rerouted

Suspended, in transit from familiar
past to barely conceivable future
no transport
no terminal

Atlas of the current world holds no map,
currencies are chaotic, values upended
no compass
no bounds

Travel coma blurs lines of then, now and when
dreams seem real and real seems delusive
no bottom
no ceiling

Advice abounds, ungrounded by proof
meant to placate and allay
no validation
no confirmation

Adopt detachment

Allude to meaning

Attain serenity


May, 2020

Grief floats around the ozone of my mind, looking for a flat surface to land
a reason for being there, a wound to feast upon, ways to grow and take over.
Grateful competes, buzzes like a bee poking its nose into blossoms of
Memories, their tastes and smells tantalizing the emotion, inviting.


#3 It’s not nice to fool Mother Nature

“Go to your room,” Mother Nature states,
“You have made my house a mess.
Don’t come out,
until my oceans no longer feel stress.

“A pox on you, you brats, who
think that plastic is the God.
And while you’re at it, be quiet
just walk by each other and nod.

“My fish can hear each other again
and my coyotes can walk free
along the streets you made your own
after you destroyed the trees.

“Stay there in your room until
I see that you have heard me loud
and clear. Until you feel the fear
deeply that keeps you from a crowd.

“The tsunamis and the earthquakes
have obviously not gotten through
to all you naughty children, so
not fires but a plague finally may do.

“Will you take care of each other
and share with nature’s wealth?
Or still keep your marbles to yourself
as my earth is destroyed with stealth?

“This can be a turning point in evolution
if you use it to think upon your mistakes.
Go to your rooms and ponder this while
I decide if you can do what it takes.”


June, 2020

metaphors about our metamorphosis


#4 Metaphorisis

into the grab bag of life’s game I reach
a long river finds itself in my hold
small islands of rest offer their calm beach
windswept currents pull meek along with bold

a contest of sorts, this life I am in
a journey, a road, nay, a waterfall
with droplets cascading, bursting within
gravity pulling down water and all

an olive tree with gnarled grey branches
and roots five generations deep below
a home that longs to be a great mansion
metaphorisis, unique portmanteau

no matter the comparison, our play
must end, the next act a baffling buffet


July, 2020

Routine…bane and balm…god help us


#5 Coping with COVID

Eyes open, stiff knees wobble, coffee on, blinds pulled open.
Sip, repeat.
News? Notes?
Screen opened.
Spider, Sudoku Wordscapes, Words, FreeCell, Facebook.
Numbers noted.

What is the sleep score on Fitbit and ResMed?
What is the bridge score on Trickster cards?
What is the time, the date, the daily weight?

Brush, brush,
Swish, rinse, repeat
Right leg, left leg, swimsuit raised
Grab hat, mask, googles and towel

One two three four breathe
Five six seven eight breathe
Over and over and over, repeat.

May heart be filled with loving kindness,
Be well, happy, peaceful and at ease
May all of you and you and you too.

Show up, suit up
Take one day at a time
Do the next right thing.

Rest, read, cook, clean
Routine and ritual

In and out follow the breath.
Numbers comfort, a chant
Flung in the face of fear
Can you count to infinity?


August, 2020

“He not busy being born is busy dying.” Bob Dylan


#6 Embrace Fragility

This eggshell, this butterfly wing, this snowflake

called life

Fragile breakable finite life

This thin ice, this fine China teacup, this glass slipper

called love

Delicate beautiful wondrous love

This spinning earth, this red star, this melting glacier

This ticking clock, today’s peach, a new bride’s bouquet

Precious ephemera

soap bubble hopes

etch-a-sketch dreams

come and go

Bird bones and spun sugar

fragile and delicate

Autumn leaf, dandelion fluff

hanging spiders web

Thinning skin and older bones

lost words, minor and momentous

This secret we try to keep from ourselves


Late to writing, Donna enjoys bouncing around in the pool and thinking of things to say in poetry and short fiction. Family, friends and food are her 3 top priorities.





Note: This essay is part of Writing Through Change, a series of posts and guest articles about life and writing in unsettled times.

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