“Portraits of Corona”

Grim Reaper—
Across these states,
Doctors orders they are defyin’
But it wont be long
they will be cryin’
Sickness risin’
Coronavirus lyin’
In wait to claim
that hisses at the lessons of history & science
Defiantly spitting
In the face of fact
And truth
And irrefutable proof
About this plague—
That already has claimed hundreds of thousands of lives
Millions worldwide
Staking its deadly claim
Like the Grim Reaper
Peace Breacher
Invisible Angel of Death
Irrespective of people—
Or Black
Or Yellow
Or Brown.
Hear the sound:
Of a cresting river of mourning
Amid this affliction
Amid this hell storm of sickness
That shall inevitably run its full course
With such catastrophic force
Of which historians will someday write
And generations shall read
In the light
Of knowing:
That in the midst of this global pandemic
Even as its deadly winds were blowing
That across these states,
Doctors’ orders
they were defyin’
But soon
they were cryin’
In wait to claim
Their poor ignorant souls…

The Saints—
And the preacher said, “Come,
For I have heard the voice of the Lord
And we have only but
‘Fear’ to abhor
Not a mere virus
Which shall not penetrate
The House of the Lord
With its sanctified gates”

And if
You should take ill, the preacher said,
By His blood
I will heal
And raise you
From corona’s deathbed
Never mind you may be feeble
Or golden in age,
Suffer diabetes, heart disease
Or be in a cancer stage
That make you uniquely susceptible
To the virus’ rage
Causing you prematurely
To go to your graves
Never mind the foolishness
Of scientists
And their worldly advice
Never mind the government
That ordered you to stay inside

“Shall a man rob God?”
The preacher exhorts.
“For we are not of this world
In God we trust”
“Come, let us enter into His house with thanksgiving
And into His courts with praise
For our God is bigger than Corona
Turn to your neighbor,
and give God the praise”

And so,
They came
Like sheep to the slaughter
The virus a ruthless marauder
And church meetings mere fodder
Amid this world pandemic
Of horror
The “Lord’s house” transformed into a super-spreader
Of infectious disease
That lapped like flaming tongues of wildfire
Bringing church leadership to its knees
Claiming bishops and pastors,
and laity alike
Sending shockwaves
Through Zion
And bringing to light:
That, like God, the virus
Was no respecter of persons
Regarded neither saint, nor sinner
Nor foolish assertions;

That lives could have been saved
And tragedy averted
If by faith
and by wisdom
the Watchman
Had only alerted
The sheep
Instead of falling fast asleep
As the wolf
began to creep
And the flock,
it began to eat

So in the end,
the preacher’s epitaph read:
“Here lies a good man
With delusions of grandeur in his head
A man who didn’t have to die
Upon corona’s bed.”

The Angels—
And the angels, masked and gloved,
Performed miracles
Impervious to fear
As they sought to heal them
Shed tears for those
whose eyes affixed longingly to these guardian souls
As if they had halos
Amid laborious last breaths
And the encroachment of cold death
As scripts and ventilators
Ceased in utility
And all of humanity
Gasped at the depravity
Of an invisible enemy
That froze
The world
In suspended animation
But the Angels braved the storm
Fought on
Wearied and worn
Their souls forever torn
By the ones they lost
And the ones they won
After the storm had passed
And returned the sun
And it was clear
That these wingless human souls
Were the most valiant ones
Our Angels

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