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I wrote this poem five years ago and reworked it recently. Now, of course, we all know that four weeks is nothing. It’s not even half the time we’ve been social distancing. So take this poem with a grain of salt. I didn’t know any better.

Four weeks in
If only I had known
Three days was nothing

Four weeks now notched on my belt of motherhood
Four weeks with a sick child, one at a time,
always on Thursdays
Falling not like dominoes
but like patient drops
from the tip of a

I remember the story of one long-ago mother
Closeting three boys in a room
Daring them to share 
Not this business of disinfecting wipes and painstaking hand washing
Prolonging what must come

Let Nature have her way
Twice now I have battled nausea and won
Lying flat on my back unable to move
(for fear of Nature having her way)
Headache pounding
A Pyrrhic victory

Do people still go about?
Is there still work and school?
Goods still made? Shelves still stocked?

Once the shortest month,
February has stretched herself cat-like to her full length
Outpacing even gray blustery March.

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash