Poetry – It’s Getting to Me – John Grey

– Balancing a water jug –

It’s Getting to Me

I’ve been quarantined too long,

and fill time by balancing a water jug on my head

while reading “The Sound And The Fury” backwards

or imagining what if Hemingway

wrote Shakespeare’s plays

or the stairs in his house were made of Jell-O -

but I need to plug on

in the face of solitary confinement,

and everybody and everything masked,

even the ceramics on the mantel,

and Jesus on the cross,

and I can’t relax

if there’s no one to relax with,

or clear my head

when the same stuff keeps rushing back,

like what hope has the giant human body

against an invisible fleet

of alien invaders,

with more moves than Bruce Lee,

and who’d gladly slit my throat

if they weren’t too busy

laying waste to my lungs –

and I don’t want people

catching what I’ve got –

call it cabin fever,

call it the crazies,

so please – keep your distance –

don’t read this poem.

John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in Sin Fronteras, Dalhousie Review and Qwerty with work upcoming in West Trade Review, Willard and Maple and Connecticut River Review.

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