Now we believe the world is one.

This is it
This is the one we feared and dreaded,
This is the wellspring of disaster movies.

This is it
This is arbitrary life and death –
The finger points at you, but not you, for no reason.

This is it
This is the Earth stirring in her sleep, restless, itchy,
Turning over; a lot of the fleas get squashed.

This is it
The global pandemic. This is what it looks like.
It is a surprise.

In the movies
The stage tilted, people ran backwards and forwards, screaming
Not standing an hour in a supermarket car park, listening for a cough.

In the movies
A hero arose, muddy but glistening, wise, strong, marvellous, very good-looking,
Not a nurse, videoing herself, sitting crying in the car.

In the movies
The deaths were spectacular, somebody bad, ripped in half by a dinosaur,
Not an ordinary person, fighting for breath, surrounded by plastic.

In the movies
There was always a safe country, a place to run to, somewhere to aim for, salvation.
Now there is no country unaffected.

In the movies
The heroic leaped, jumped, had brainwaves, fought with swords or lasers,
Not just turned up for work, washed their hands or disinfected the shopping.

Now we find
The best thing to do is be kind to your neighbour
Be prudent, but not stockpile and use what you can.

Now we find
Our values are changing, those we previously rewarded
Don’t matter at all.

Now we find
Vacuous celebrities, pop stars, media influencers, athletes, promoters,
Less important than the delivery man or the girl behind the till.

Now we find
Terrorists advising terrorists to avoid Europe because it is dangerous
And drug runners in Africa taking food to the poor.

Now we find
The skies at last are clearing.  The aeroplanes have stopped; we see planets and stars.
In a few weeks of not adding to it, pollution has gone from the bay, the whales have returned.

Now we find
What it takes to lift our heavy foot from the Earth
And let the planet breathe out.

Now we find
The message cannot be more clear or obvious
We must change the way we live to be allowed to do it.

Now we find
The human race must stop racing,
Slow down, be kind, live gently on the Earth,
Value one another, husband resources,
Love our goldilocks planet and all that is on it
Be grateful for each breath we take, conscious of the universe.
Aware of our place in it, be small, be local,
Be honest, be considerate, be loving, be brave.

Now we find
Your best self,
Shut in a room with your mind.

This is the apocalypse,
How are you doing?


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