Even what was beyond us / was recast in our image;
we gave the country a heart, / the storm an eye,
|stacy-marie ishmael||May 4|| 1|
What does it mean, for tens and hundreds of thousands of people to die? Friends, colleagues, children, grandparents, strangers. What does it mean for their deaths to be dismissed, ignored, questioned, explained away, designated as necessary for progress. What does it mean for the ones left behind to grieve? What does it mean to grieve when you cannot, dare not gather?
Viruses do not discriminate but society does.
Who we police and who we coddle and who we condemn and who we praise and who we see and who we render invisible—those are decisions.
Society is us. Decisions don’t make themselves.
Even what was beyond us
was recast in our image;
we gave the country a heart,
the storm an eye,
the cave a mouth
so we could pass into safety.
— from Things by Lisel Mueller