1st Day Open

Troubles

Wary of the covert threat
of a virus that is without a country,
I wait patiently in my Clorox-ed car
to pick up this week’s groceries.

A woman I know is leaving the store,
unmasked, so I can see her laughing
face as she passes through families
who are triumphantly entering.

As she gets in her nearby truck,
I read her red-and-blue bumper sticker:

Pray for Our Troops
Especially Our Snipers.

I conjure images of her son,
a proud uniformed enemy killer,
and her rifle-carrying husband
on TV protesting COVID orders.

A poem by Irish poet Eavan Boland
remembers the pain of familiar news
of snipers at dawn—those rooftop sons
of Dublin mothers who waited at home.

As if a personal response to our troubles,
Boland died this week. I search her words
for wisdom or solace, find only more questions,
shelter at home, wonder who will be next.

by Anne McCrady

 

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