I sat beneath the boughs of a tree, once,
and watched the crowds go by. Dressed
warmly against the cold, bright coloured
scarves, boots and shoes, and even sand-
als displayed beneath shorts of a wry
hard man, displaying his hairy legs and
muscles against the hoar, raw frosts on
the brown, bare, sleeping, avenue trees.
The crowd moves, like silvered mercury,
in the morning wintry sunshine. Slowly
spreading out and coming together in
harmony. They wave to folk walking the
long winding pathways and, like the tiny
silvery blobs, they pool together and
they separate and move on to their own
warm fires or cafés for cheering drinks.
The children run around playing games
with balls, throwing frisbees as high as
the topmost branches of the green firs.
One child falls and shattering screams of
rage echo across the grass and concrete,
of the play areas, and a cool, concerned
father kneels and administers the kindly
kisses and hugs. We, wait as the noise
subsides giving space to, a robin above
my head as it sparkles into life and its,
rich notes rising and falling; delighting my
shocked ears. And others turned and we
smile and watch as he comes to hop on
harried grass, tipping his head, levelling
his bright eyes as if to say, ‘Better now.”
This was a time of many months long,
and still a robin sings and brightens the
day but I wander through the park as
if I had lost my way. Each of us now
carries our burdens of COVID deaths,
and fears of our futures as lockdown
follows lockdown. But now the man in
his shorts, a stick supporting wasted
muscles, each breath broken. We chat
through masks and he mentions being
in hospital and the heinous, horror that
COVID19 is. No one has been spared.
Each face the gravity of the mounting
up of debts, job losses, shoddy leaders,
rising death toll and various vaccines;
and will they help us through to being
a human race that is wary of each other?
Do we like those silver drops attract ?
Or do we prefer being divided? Separated?
And we solemnly ask, ‘ Will there come a
when the folk dance will stir again and
welcome the pull towards each other, shake
a hand and hug or will we, our nature now
changed to isolation, continue to slide away?