Riccarton Campus 24th 25th 26th… March 2020

By Rosie Russell

The frozen view – no instamatic shot –
the empty banks of seats – the theatre lectureless
The lectures theatreless on distant screens,
Corridors longer for their emptiness echoing
with no coming
and going,
no laughing and greeting, no comparing and fretting.

A moment’s masked and scurrying figure rescues a laptop
to the safety of a kitchen table and spilt juice.
Another mask, another laptop, another kitchen table.
No instamatic shot – a loop
of frozen time.

The monitors blink.

A disconsolate, cleaner sprays and wipes
and sprays and
the unseen foe
and again
replayed now, tomorrow
and tomorrow.

In the sunshine, the daffodils grow.

For me, one of the strangest things about the pandemic and lockdown has been the distortion of time: both frozen and flashing by. How did it get to be spring again? Was it this year or last year or even the year before that we met, talked, hugged? I haven’t written much – I am always about to because there will always be time and yet …it has gone again!

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