Reflections I

The air at the end of the world makes humanity sluggish.
Productive days seem years ago,
But anxiety feeds on my mind like a parasite,
Taking all it can consume before laying waste to an empty shell.
I've seen empty city streets,
Once crowded monuments meant to be viewed up close
From the "comfort" of my home by way of a screen.
I never longed to visit them like I do now,
Pondering the future and if I'll ever visit them after God's reaping is finished,
If God doesn't see fit to slay me
By the hands of an invisible, violent killer looking for its next host.
How it picks the best hiding places...
The door handle...
The keys...
The medicine bottle...
The neighbor...
Unending hibernation seems to be our medicine, our veil, our protection,
As we lose our paper gods, scrapping for food and supplies.
I gazed outside the other day to the trees looking greener,
The rivers and streams seeming clearer,
The birds singing a happy song,
While all of humanity sings a song of mourning.
It seems nature hasn't much use for us,
A parting gift for its destruction at our hands,
As it flourishes and we fade into obscurity.
Will the streets stay empty?
Will the shops stay closed?
Will tomorrow be the same?
Will they exist who know my name?

Due to the outbreak of SARS 2 COVID-19, I have had a lot of time to write. At the same time, I have also had a lot of time to think which, for someone with crippling depression and anxiety, can sometimes be a bad thing. However, writing is often the outlet I use. I write my initial thoughts down, rephrase them in an artful way, and, sometimes, I am able to step away refreshed. I’ve titled this poem “Reflections I” because it was something I had been dealing with since the start of a shelter-in-place order where I found myself hundreds of miles away from my home, from my cat, from my friends, from my parents, form my family… and it was the perfect recipe for overwhelming negative thoughts. Obviously, there isn’t a lot positive in this piece and I did not intend for there to be. From my point of view, there are very few positive aspects that are occurring these days. Thankfully, I am in a good place mentally. I have people around me who care about me and I care for them as well. Sometimes I have to keep in mind that there are those out there who are dealing with this in complete isolation. With this thought, I’m able to put these things into perspective and realize that my situation could be a whole lot worse. With as little comfort as that might provide me with, it is also necessary to understand that we are all in this together. Everyone has been affected by this in some way, some being affected far more than others. This was a reflection of how terrible I saw the world at the time. Ultimately, this led to a string of reflections which is why it has been numbered.

This writing is the work of its author, Andrew Ryan Duckworth, and can in no way be reproduced, copied, or distributed in any form without request from the author.

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