Socially distant, virtually inseparable
the links between us:
the ways we touch others,
not warm fingers interlaced
but swept across cool keyboards,
music shared across balconies,
tasting notes like a crisp wind
crossing borders and boundaries,
not the comforting embrace
but the smiling face miles away,
countries or continents or
six full feet apart
so long as we’re not six feet under
we can bridge any distance.
smoothly typed texts, raised
voices spanning gaps, our words
heard by ears, read by wide eyes,
felt by drumming heartbeats:
emotion’s rising tide.
in this new world of isolation,
We all pull together.
April is National Poetry Month, and although many poetry and writing events have been cancelled due to the current world crisis, we have also come together in other ways through technology. Many open mics, book launches, and other meetups have switched to virtual venues, and people are searching for new ways to come together, support each other, and consume art.
So in the spirit of this unity, I’d love to share some online venues to help get through these trying times. My favorite poetry magazine, Rattle, has a podcast and a virtual open mic called Rattlecast that meets/posts weekly. The FaceBook group for Latitudes Poetry Night has switched from monthly (in person) meetups to weekly Wednesday night (online) Open Mics as a way to support others during quarantine. Different libraries have switched to online meetups for book clubs such as Barberton Library’s monthly Hooks and Books.
There are also free downloadable ebooks from ManyBooks.Net, Project Gutenberg, and (for audiobooks) Librivox. And, last but not least, many libraries have online resources as well for checkouts–as well as other events. My favorite of these is the annual Read + Write: 30 Days of Poetry via Cuyahoga County Public Library; just sign up on the site for April emails with poems from Ohio poets as well as writing prompts.
This year, on April 5th, one of my poems from Soul Picked Clean will be the featured poem for Read + Write. I’m so honored to be part of this event and beyond thrilled!
So, I hope you enjoyed my poem! If you can, I urge you to take advantage of some of these online resources. If you are quarantined at home, you are helping to save lives. If you need to venture out to work to keep everyone else going during these difficult times, thank you. Your efforts are appreciated, and my heart goes out to you all.
Take solace in the good things, and try to get through the bad. Stay safe, stay well, and read often!