Poems, From Ovid to Covid…

Poetry is always valued in times of crisis

‘In the beginning the sky weighed down on the earth in a thick, black fog which trapped the prostrating heat in a blanket of clouds; and throughout the time that it took four moons to wax and to wane, the south winds blew with their sweltering currents of toxic air.’

Ovid, Metamorphoses

Two Poems

By Cathleen Cohen

Unboxed, they sit alert,
longing for forests,
but must wait

Masked Avengers

By Len Newey

The world is forever changing,
It brings new challenges everyday….
Like the presence of Covid,
Which is likely here to stay…

Three Poems

By Dorothy Baird

This year they extended the length of January.
They did it secretly, covertly slowing down the seconds
so each minute bulged with a tension of collapsed spaces
that pushed against the old precision
like an inner tube about to blow.


By Ginnie Padden

Gelatinous voices cresendo,
alarmed as my ragged breaths
flatten to your…sonar…blip…

Home Planet

By J. L Wright

Longing for a way home to earth
before the planet took a left turn
before the bodies in the sky
become aligned six feet apart

Three Poems

By Ray Greenblatt

Ceiling fans superfluous,
strong gusts rush in
fresh from the sea storm—
air not laced with Covid.

Can you see me, can you hear me?

By Kerri Jones

Were you there when they called you that very last time?
Could you hear me?
Could you see me?

A Dream of Immunity

By Tejas Yadav

Spring is ripening the dark moss
Like hibernating moles
Now from locked-down holes
Some emerge into more chaos.

Two Poems

By Charles Rammelkamp Pandemic “They called it the ‘Black Death,’because of the color of the gangrenous flesh,”Mister Philby lectured, my mom’s colleagueat the school, here to drop off some papers,though they were all working from home now. “Bruised-looking, purplish, like an aubergine.The bacteria came from fleas,entered the bloodstream,clotted on the extremities – nose, hands, feet;theContinue reading “Two Poems”

‘What can Come’

By Alice Leventhal

“I live in the present.
But I exist in dread.”
Abigail Thomas wrote,
in her memoir,
What Comes Next.

One day this will be Over

By Joe Bannon

Looking out the window on a grey wet afternoon, on a leave day without merit wished the end was coming soon.


By Janet Howcroft

ONE rolls a dice
ANOTHER sets a counter
moving clockwise round the board
while ads flash and jump like migraine
on the edges of your vision

Two Poems

By Dhee Sankar

I have to practise social distancing
As though society is my closest friend.
I have to drop — cheap trinket — from your ring
Our unsocial meetings come to an end.

Death Before Covid

By Lucy Lloyd

Holding your hand, I feel,
I think I feel,
Your fingers move.

Lockdown Slam

By Jonathan Dovey

In like a lion and out like a lamb,
This year’s March end is a lockdown slam.

Three Poems

By Irene Cunningham

I fancy strolling
up long rows of lilac, or
cooling my ankles
in a lush bluebell wood…smell
the earth’s clever art.

Poems on Covid

By Rabiya Haseeb

It’s raining outside
Drop by drop falling on leaves
Taking away with it sorrows and grieves
Making everything fresh and happy

Three Poems

By Samantha Terrell

We have arrived
At precisely the place we have been heading—
On the ever-upward escalator
Of decades long stagnation
Meant only to thwart the progress of our nation

Closer and Closer

By Ann Lipsitt

We are getting closer and closer
to being
closer and closer.

Three Poems

By J. Khan

Think not to question the imminent jab,
nor tales of Middle Kingdom caves and bats:
Nope, no viral hacks at the Wuhan Lab.
Science has spoken. Facts is facts.

Lockdown Latte

By James Lloyd

It’s been a year of lockdown
Been living in my dressing gown
Is it Friday? Is it Thursday?
Who’s to know – let’s call it Blursday

Pandemic Decorum

By M. A. Dubbs

Mom says there’s nothing tackier
than wearing masks to a wedding.
I disagree.
Watching the buffering circle
spin on Gigi’s oak casket
like a long porno video
wasn’t the elegance
Papa originally planned.

Bombardment: Confusion

By Jacky Pearson

Bombardment: Confusion

Stumbling on cold jagged path

Eyes can’t close to danger

Ears throb hot red from sharp noise

Elation and anxiety hold hands travelling to bright white ice light

Alone Together

By Victoria Helen Loftus

It’s not that I won’t admit I’m wrong –
It’s just that –
And another thing –

Deathly Chills

By Bruce Jackson

Isolated, as lonely as a cloud
That floats alone o’er towns and hills
Where once I saw an unruly crowd,
A host of desperate fools;
In the supermarket, filling trolleys,
Fighting o’er loo rolls, bread and lollies.

Covid Nurse

By Carl Barber

Where would I be with out you
your nightingales cry
softening my own
upon a bitter livid darkening day.


By Ali Hurley

I wish I had known that it would be the last time I’d see you for a while,
I wish I had known, I’d have hugged you and told you I love you for miles,

Two Poems

By James Hall

Prometheus deceived the gods
by gifting humans fire
many wonders would be wrought
if they could only stand the heat.

Three Poems

By Betsy Nelson

What had he forgotten
when he rose from his bed in the late darkness,
wandered to the kitchen where I read a book,
sipped a cup of tea,
recovered from a hard day’s work?

Growing Wild

By Clare Manley and Emma Claire Sweeney

Bins of tissues,
every cough, sneeze and tear.
Empty packets,
chocolate buttons, lemon drizzle, custard creams.


By Alison Oughton

A hundred thousand faces missed,
a distanced grief; a photo kissed.
Your mum, their dad, beloved friend,
our touch denied them at the end.


By Marcia Carter

She sits on the sea serene,
bobbing about by the shore.
Fenders safe, tied on and tight
hanging, protecting her hull.


By Steve Grogan

My window gives me a view
Yet keeps everyone isolated
So I can only guess what’s new
And what people are thinking


By Jasmyn Painter

I was never created to be isolated
Never once was that a thought in the Creator’s mind
I was made in an image
An image of perfect community

This is Us

By Cathy Ibberson

We’ve managed as a family through the dark winter nights
Using cinnamon scented candles and star fairy lights
At times someone’s temper has reached dizzy heights

My New Year Ditty

By Denise Simblet

2020- it was one of those years
Dotted with good times, surrounded by tears
Lots of hometime to keep us all well

Thelma and Louise in an Age of Covid

By Julie Allyn Johnson

fishing tackle sanitized
mask/skirt coordinated ensembles
Thunderbird center console
stocked with Purell

Could Any Have?

By Bosola Joseph

Could any have imagined the impact,
One lone minuscule invader would bring.
In control, with no authorised contract.
Fearlessly impartial, about a thing.

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

Mum in a Pandemic

By Tora Chessum

Sounding out phonics
Keep your focus on the screen
Don’t get distracted
by Dad trying to clean

A Sharp Touch

By Connor Milligan

Takes awhile
To be undone


By Elena Isabel

When the world is dark and cold and dangerous under foot REMEMBER the time you walked in the sunshine and felt sand in between your toes.


By Nesta Cook

What a year 2020 was for the world
From March the news of the pandemic unfurled
A sinister link to the phrase ‘gone viral’
When the COVID cases began to spiral

The Neighbor

By Bobbi Sinha-Moray

When night erased the day and
a fog smothered every echo of
laughter I saw our neighbor again
after so long, he now delusional


By Robina Afzal

Still can’t believe it. It’s not sunk in. You’ve left us.
How quickly it all happened .. the phone call, the dash to hospital..
Racing against time, not knowing if you were still with us.


By Tim Newson

You, me, him ,her,
Contact that was just a blur,
A breath, a laugh, a sigh,
A simple embrace is enough to die

Two Poems

By Christine Parcells

I see the spiraled web in which I’m caught
A familiar maze fragile, yet taut

Three Poems

By Diane Sahms

My body nothing more than a space suit,
immortal spirit has been dropped into.

Three Poems

By Sven Kretzschmar

cotton-texture country fields
and open-throated birdsong against corona-ted
silence of a downtown main street.

Three Poems

By Ben Hartridge

The doctor comes running down
The rain wearing a long coat
And a mask. And I mask up too.
And we call the doorbell and
Hope that you will let us in.


By G. Emil Reutter

Await its arrival on this January day.
The air is dense and songbirds are quiet.
It is not a happy month as long days of
freezing weather followed by reports of death
after death, but the vaccine is coming.

Corona Virus

By Fay L. Loomis

obliterates appointments
erases calendars, blanks slates

The Fluffed up Plan

By Maggie Zolobajluk

Nowhere to be seen, was the man at the top.
His head just off the political chopping block

A Nurse’s Plea

By Yvonne Ugarte

Hold on tightly to my hand, Bill
I will not let go
Your family cannot be with you
As we must isolate you in this room
But I am here

It Always Rains Inside

By Jasmine Clarke

Staring through the window pain
the howling rage of relentless rain
makes me wonder

Two Poems

By Grace Massey

Let’s throw a party! No masks
allowed. Please cough
into the salad, sneeze
into the ice cream, kiss strangers,
on both cheeks.

Two Poems

By Patricia Peterson

here on the edge
where the sky is green against
the lake turned silver at the rim

The Silent Bluebird

By Sofi Bajor

He had to spend all of his time cooped up inside.
Like Bukowski’s bluebird in his very own cage.
Tormented by his crowded mind.

Two Poems

By Kate Meyer

Just test and trace for those who drop like flies;
Only the rapid ping of news by text:
Only results that logic fast denies
That beg the question ‘Is it my turn next?’

Zooming in on Haircuts

By Trish Kerrison

Tight-curls loosen, lose control,
flatten out,
succumb to frizz,
hyper-straight struggle to maintain rigidity


By Izzy Lamb

Downfall From High Ground

By Ceinwen Haydon

She’s certain what is wrong
and what is right: especially now,
in these Covid times. She refines her art:
hard stares, raised eyebrows, tsk tsk sounds –

Seasons of Lockdown

By Rosalind Leveridge

It began with daffodils
And ended with fog, this confinement
And we had just returned from Nice.
‘Nice in Nice’, my father used to say.

Three Poems

By Bobbie Prime

Shepherds without a correct UK licence
will be left seated on the ground.
Any non-national sheep, reindeer or donkeys
found without appropriate entry papers
will be impounded at Dover.

A Worthing Winter

By Anita Moyes

Golden leaves fallen and swept away,
A weakening sun frames a shortening day,
Casting long shadows across the freezing sand.
Red tinges reflected in a Winter wonderland.


By Pauline Christina Knight

I wrote this after hearing my own grandchildren and other children’s experiences of being in the current situation of home school lockdown. Bless them.


By Rachel Low

My Solitary Walnut Tree

By Elisabeth Myers

You are incredible.
Anchored in abundance, my strong and splendid sentinel.
For so many years, you have stood alone.

Two Poems

By Megha Sood

Like a blind cave
brittle rib cage hosting the infection
an unwanted guest:
the virus opens its mouth
its glistening black teeth
in the dead of the night

Uncertain Degrees

By Michael Leach

How sacred are your oaths? How ulterior are your motives? How democratic is your process? How independent is your inquiry? How pertinent are your questions? How honourable are your intentions? How shady is your past? How empty is your promise?

Hope on the Horizon

By Claire Rowan

i’m going for a walk mum
i don’t know how long i’ll be
i’m going to the horizon
there’s some hope there just for me


By Noeleen Fasolilli

If lockdown has held me back,
I welcome every strap,
That loosened thought and tongue and sight

On Being Oppressed by Coronavirus

By Erin Miller

Trapped in a land infected by plague,
NY forces its residents to quarantine.
keep the mask in place, and don’t
increase the spread of the pathogen.


By David Betteridge

Here I stand,
or, more often, sit or lie
or, within a narrow compass,
pace around.

Three Poems

By Caroline Cripps

Warned, we bought a sack of potatoes,
lots of lentils, haircuts, completed time sheets.
It was Lent, with fasting, prayer,
online reflection on the plagues of Egypt,
Easter sunrise and finally roast lamb.

Two Poems

By Christian Ward

Elbow-bump the ginger tom
pawing your duvet. Watch him
double up as the sun
on this dreary February day.

Two Poems

By David Banks

like lockdown in London in sixty five
twenty twenty three and a half centuries on
following feverish viral visitations
plague and pestilence pervade Paris

Crafted not Predicted

By Sue Hunter

If pity drips like soft candlewax onto a fragile heart, and deep sighs airbrush
in tones of grey all wild imaginings

New Years Poem 2021

By Charles Betts

Another year’s over and what did we do?
Tried to stay away from that old covid flu.
When the year started we had already made plans,
To travel somewhere to far distant lands.


By Julie Beaton

Sadness follows people around
Our past way of life can not be found
The freedoms we once had are gone

Two Poems

By Jenny Hockey

First there’s the travelling ache
in my jaw and ear and further afield,
my shoulder and upper back,
that surely derives from fear
of a world in need of a host
that knows me as prey,

Footy Has Returned!

By Alun Robert

to the elite football restarted
though most life is in lockdown

I used to go to Coffee Houses

By Anne Billinge

I used to go to coffee houses
I used to go out shopping
I used to love bookshop browses
I used to go bus hopping

That Day

By L Lyddon

That day will come
And my senses will savour every second
I will walk down the hill and when I see you I will run and I won’t stop until my arms have found yours

Anticipation Is

By Roger Haydon

a glitter patterned face mask,
a queue, a sore arm then
maybe a handshake with a stranger,
hugs again from friends,


By Karen Koziol

Corona is deadly and mean
Particles small and unseen
It prays on the masses, the weak, and the maskless
And sends us into quarantine

I Heard Something on the Wireless

By Michael Miller

I heard something on the wireless
As i went about my day,
Some new strain of virus
In some province far away.


By Jacky Pearson

Like a ship bouncing the ups and downs, on it’s true course

Covid Ghost

By Vin Pranitis

There is no seed
where the feeder was.
Nothing on the ground.


By Sarah Bennett-Green

I was witness to strange times.
When rain sliced through the heat of spring.

Losing It

By Jennifer Crystal

It starts with carrots
Mindlessly dipping them in hummus I notice

Flatten the Curve

By Francie Czerwinski

The new norm
Social distancing

Two Poems

By Patrick Williamson

Listen to the sounds within, the sonar of the fridge,
the clicking of the pipes as the heating starts, the
irregular clunking of the cooling system, the ticking

Two Poems

By Robert Milby

The Iceman had a Corona;
Covid 19 BC version.


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