My normal day has changed.
In some ways - how happy I am being
a hermit, a homebody - it is the same.
But once, on a normal day,
I might have driven the back road
from the farm to the mall
and joined the people with glazed eyes
browsing the aisles looking for
something to buy, nothing else
on my mind. I might have
gone through the drive-through
on the way home and bought
a frosted treat, gone happily home,
the day nicely shortened,
content to watch t.v. until supper.
Now, I am even more solitary, a hermit.
I stay in my rooms, a little too content
to not venture out, because I feel safe in here,
and the longer I do this, the harder
it becomes to go out at all.
Out there, we walk wide circles
around each other in the street,
because the variants are gaining ground
and the vaccines are too slow.
And anti-maskers defiantly gather
to celebrate their rights at the expense
of our safety. We all wear masks, and
I wonder how it will feel to walk around
with naked faces again. Or if we ever will.
The difference is the abnormal has become
normal. It will never have the old, happy,
we had when we thought there would
always be more.
Now, when someone calls at an unusual time,
we ask "Is everything okay?"
We say "stay safe" every day, to everyone,
knowing no one, in this new world of ours,
is ever really safe: from covid, from conspiracy
theorists, from infiltrated political parties where
the white right has taken over, passing laws
to enhance voter suppression, democracy
hanging by a thread in the land of the free
and the home of the brave.
I count what blessings I have in this new normal
because it can always get worse.
But now I look back at those unthinking,
spendthrift normal days with nostalgia.
We will never feel that safe again.
inspired byNormal Day by Mary Jean Irion / Wild Writing