Before the buds had even formed on the trees and bushes in England‘s green and pleasant land, we found ourselves locked down by some scary virus.
Religiously at 8pm every Thursday we would open our front doors and clap or pot bash ceremoniously for a few minutes, and then, in a Stepford-style fashion, silence would again prevail, and isolation from anyone and everything continue. Every week, the hint of longer evenings assured that little bit more positivity as the twilight of dusk turned into daylight and finally sunset.
The silence of the azure blue skies, now devoid of those heavy jet fuelled metallic vultures, instead filled with the clear voiced shrill of long forgotten birdsong, itself no longer stifled by monoxide’s of various flavours. As the heat of the sun strengthened, the leaves popped from their sticky pods and eggshells cracked like a Pastry Chef in full make, in various nests in infinite hedgerows, the featherless gonks that emerged grew at speed into strong and vociferous fledglings.
The national heartbreak of demise or serious illness slowly began to taper as the viral “pipeline leak“ was apparently being capped and hints of normalcy started to appear briefly in the country once more.
The international Gaoler slowly turned the keys in the locks of counties and countries and the inhabitants scampered out like rats under pursuit from the champion cat, so eager for a feast or serial cull. In their haste, and ignorant selfish need for some rays of ultra-violet irrespective of the needs of others less resilient around them, the king and queen rats barged their way through the proverbial crowds to ensure their passage regardless, and in their so doing, the odourless, invisible and demonic virus stowed away in nostrils and mouths like a desperate migrant eager to land on as yet virgin territory and spread its misery and death on new, unsuspecting victims.
School uniforms with their factory pressed creases and newness odour started to fill many rooms across the world as children prepared to return to a place of neural development in alleged bubbles of safety. But, as older pupils migrated to their higher education isles of residential academia, so too had the hidden pandemic. Itself returning from a brief summer respite, but now more potent and enthusiastic to make its presence felt, spread itself out like a spiders web in a light breeze, its infectious gossamer threads catching on anything and everything in its wake. Long gone are the warm, light evenings, instead, replaced with ever darkening longer nightfalls, with the sweet smell of logs burning in various pits or places filling the ever nervous skies. Wafts of roast Sunday lunches and blackberry crumbles exude from the delicate puffing wall vents of kitchen extractor fans.
The socially distanced parents huddle on park benches updating their antisocial media with pointless statements and factless claims and opinions on another pointless celebrity and their tattoo ridden canvas for a body, as their offspring play as one paying complete ignorance to any form of distancing, social or otherwise.
Meanwhile, the Grim Reaper negotiates a new contract of quotas of sheathes of wheat for his scythe, with his new found compatriot of conditional termination Coronavirus. “Business has never been so brisk” he remarks as he sharpens his scythe in preparation for the next daily toll.
The global dithering of governments is laughed over like a pathetic joke by both he and Monsignor Covid, for every day dithered is another gargantuan bagging of death for them.
Like a Jurassic Park, there is no defence effective enough to repel such a tyrannical onslaught, and, like the avaricious Jurassic Park management, there is no disaster plan.
What then is OUR FUTURE?