The New Normal and What Really Matters

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POETRY

I miss the simple things

But life is no longer as simple…

The handshake is approaching extinction

The hug is endangered

The smile is now measured out in peeks

We are closer in grief

United in fear and loss

But we cannot console ourselves

To survive as a society

We must be physically apart

The former eccentricities

Are the new normal

6 feet apart

Is better than 6 feet under

Muffled speech

Is better

Than the dumbness of a corpse

Wash your hands

Sanitize all surfaces

We have all become ninjas

Caution the Katana

To slay the enemy’s progression

Now we have to see beauty

In a whole new light

The world has changed

But the change

Is more a return to simplicity

The eyes will have to speak more

Reflecting our smiles or pain

Listening is no longer an art

It is by default

We are apart

But we are more united

We will beat this

You and I

And rejoice collectively

With a bow, with wave

With a twinkle in the eye

While soberly,

Physically, cautiously distanced

I miss the simple days

But I am grateful

For the days we still have

Caution may not be comfortable

But being able to see loved ones again

Makes up for every discomfort,

Makes these the best of days

(Poem by Femi Onakanren)