2020 A (Covid) Christmas Carol

**

Cackling in the back of my penthouse suite closet

What I thought was a skeleton is my potential future-ghost

Shaking for medicine that must be taken now

I would like to pause it

I want a cure most

Will the present mask come off,

Reveal beauty infinite

or will it carve the future

getting so close?

*

Heckled by attendees of a courthouse for my whole life

As the judge beckoned me, I made an offhand boast

Question of sanity must be taken now

I’d like the chance to answer

In the spirit of the host

Will this disaster end

As we adapt to it?

How do we chart the future?

I guess no one knows

**

Then I heard a voice from inside my skull

The others heard it too and then there was a lull

The family carries on

This guy’s hard to the core

“I am right here, who are you looking for?”

The crowd moves away, the calm man was outrageous

“They don’t hear me” and I began to count my pages

*

Sifting through years, memories, goals and plans

Night started early and the moon understands

I sat back in my seat and reflected on the day

The tides of life are changing, plans must get underway

I scrolled and scrolled, “There is nothing here”

I cleared my throat loudly and began to fear

*

In words coming next

too hard to debunk all

Thought it made sense

to call my old uncle

He listens to me

But won’t see the whole story

Who I may need to talk to

is a guy that ain’t sorry

Once a friend of mine

now just seems sinister

May need an exorcist or

Just a Xmas-time minister

*

They said I need faith

and good sanitizer

I keep my chin up

Don a mask and seek advisors

Most I find from my chair

With my hand-held office

And avoid anyone

Who asks what this cough is

I sat and felt stressed

But couldn’t get any bolder

Heard a whisper in the dark

Felt a tap on my shoulder…

*

It was all I could do

To not scream out loud

The past was awakening

Vehemently proud

First thing I thought is

Maybe it was our cat

But he was on the floor beside me

And not at my back

The whistling wind

Turned into a chorus

As I’d fallen asleep

Dreams wouldn’t ignore us

*

“You’re nothing!

A flake,

A washed-up electrician!”

A voice was seething

Up rose his apparition

“Remember those years

When we laughed together?”

“Yes” I said frankly,

“and all the bad weather”

Behind my back

He had laughed and stole love

His face faded in the window

As rain fell from above

**

The cat knocked a vase off our farm-house dining table

When he saw the dark reflection of the passing ghost

Pressure manipulating is forgotten now

I had to catch it

Oh… so close

Will common sense reach him

For safety specific?

We need it for the future

At this time the most

*

Tracking mud from the floor of her doghouse,

Lucy has free reign

Sweet canine has more luxury than she needs

almost

Not much for etiquette

It’s eats at me now

And so I blurt out

What I think we need most

Will we keep good distance

Reveal faith incarnate

Or charge to the future

Getting too close?

**

Then she starts barking and rattles my skull

Neighbours hear it too

It’s inescapable

She follows me inside with no clear boundaries

I go upstairs & hide

“Quiet! Calm down please”

Then we are fine

On the couch just her and me

A quick belly rub

Now she’s nice as can be

*

Sifting thru pages

and trying to share words

Lucy asleep, I hear pure tones, divine birds

Charming racket of a kind crow

for fall leaves we grieve

Cool mood in the room as I

Write and believe

I lay back for a second in my rotating chair

Of an unearthly presence I become aware!

*

Television crackles

My hands on the screen

A voice speaks clearly

Blasts out of a dream

It was the news host talking

directly to me,

“You must help save the world

It’s hurting… come see!”

I see people suffering across the earth

It drags me down

like I’ve lost social worth

*

“You must fight the battle for everyone you know

Save the entire planet and everywhere you go

Don’t sweat the small stuff but carry the whole world

Brace us against the sun and the creeping moon curled!”

I said “I’m trying, I’m doing the best I can!”

“Not good enough

Try harder again”

*

Like the sound of a coin into

wishing-well water

The TV turned off

Fizzled and felt a bit hotter

Blinding light burst

from the face of my phone

Barely pressed the screen

And souls entered my home

My inbox explodes while

Text messages chime

Notifications pile up

I have nothing but time

*

Late bills

Spam and useless subscriptions

Tried to close them fast amid too many encryptions

A sight became present that bolstered my spirit

A message from someone that had read my lyric

Their image appeared on my screen so ephemeral

A fleeting glimpse, like it had it been here at all

**

Clucking in back of our chicken-house bird-palace

What I thought was an odd project are pets we love the most

Waking-up schedule

Much better now

Get up

Let hens out

Fresh eggs for our toast

Will Earth’s cruelty stop?

“Yes” should be implicit

With effort for the future

Kindness that we chose

*

Reeking from heaven to hell

the outhouse of this winter

Seems what we ate is attacking us

as time has quickly froze

Questions of appetite

Don’t feel quite right now

Please unpause

It’s what matters most

Will there be paper or light?

Any privacy?

For others in the future:

Consideration I propose

**

Then faith in my SUV

As I buckled for the store

Elastic scratched my skull

Safety is what it’s for

Driving down the road

Guy clearly saw the sign

Blew right thru it

And crossed the double line

We must be more safe

Follow worthy rules

Then when we look back

We won’t look like true fools

*

I was also rushing

When I was much younger

Time has shifted gears

To a responsible kind of hunger

We all need supplies and food

A reason to go out

No need to be rude

Kindness is all about

We can still be fast

But keep good sense to stay safe

Like wear a brand-new mask

(One that doesn’t chafe)

*

Closing my car door

Walked to get a buggy

For this time of year

It was feeling rather muggy

Clouds seemed to issue

From a parking-lot sewer-grate

Black shadows formed in front of me

And wouldn’t dissipate

In the next moment

Thought I was losing my mind

Soon to be sure of it

A specter was defined

*

The future’s public eyes

Red and burning through me

History of life

Like no one ever knew me

With hands like ravens’ claws

the phantom grabbed my wrist

Dragged me in to the cold wet sky

without my shopping list

Over streets and homes

Across river and valley

Fiend then dropped me off alone

in a cold and dirty alley

*

A puddle on the pavement

Showed my own reflection

Cars splashed by

I jumped back for my protection

The ghoul looked at me

I saw families torn apart

A young man looking old

pushing an empty shopping cart

Then a ghost blue van

hauled us off

no indecision

Threw us in the door

of a last-ditch forensic prison

*

There were hard cold floors, padded walls with windows barred

Dragged us to the morgue, down grim dark halls, my brain was scarred

Sobbing all our tears filled the reaper’s cup

The shroud of years established

hides parts of institutes corrupt

Fire in the shadow’s eyes

And blade of it’s sickle

Dying to get thru

Our fate is always fickle

**

Shackled for days in a big house of the future

Strap on a straight jacket in the fashion that I chose

Tying down pacifists, no one looks to me now

If there’s no cause for fear

Lets just bulldoze

Will present chains come off

If we’re complicit

Or will we weigh down our future

With a heavy dose?

*

Crackling chambers of a charnel house we all face

Where we find a skeleton we won’t always find a ghost

Our souls are independent

We may live forever

I’d like to prove it

Preparing for the post

Will we find complete calm

and consciousness infinite

Harness power for the future?

Excitement, no one knows

**

Smoke rises fast

Proud machines rumble

On shoppers’ gas fumes

Back to my vehicle I tumble

Turn the key to just get home

I have groceries for days

Made sure to put my heavy change

into the globe in the heavy haze

Vapours disappear into cold grey sky

And no Xmas shopping junk

if I don’t need to buy

*

As I’m driving home

with the stereo blasting

I thought of my daydreams

And impact everlasting

Then I heard a song

I’d known all along

And now that I was on

I wouldn’t get the lyrics wrong

It now made sense to me

Really set me free

I thought of friends and family

And visions that should be

*

Rolled into the driveway

Ready for the afternoon

In my truck I rocked out hard

to the rest of the classic tune

When my song was over

Spirit still in my head

Concentrate to remember

Exactly what was said

Walk up gravel and grass

Thought of phantom smoke

Anxious to tell my folks

“Really! It was no joke!”

*

All along the house

Garden still looks pleasant

Yes, it is off-season

Glad that it is present

Folks are not here yet

Only close family coming by

Exciting for our kids

Despite foreboding sky

Optimism can save the day

Turn grey skies to green plants

Helps people play nice

And still make sure to clean hands

*

Now we join around the table

Love has made it when it’s able

We are gathered here together

Mostly on screen or phone

But with the weather

Let’s be clever

And this way

We will never be alone

Those closest to us sitting down

Food we fixed is coming round

With our stories and our grace

We love our dreams and love this place

*

The future’s uncertain and

We influence the outcome

We share our insight for good health

No one should be without some

Follow guidelines and make our own plans

Use common sense and take our own stands

The things we wish for

will work out for the best

If we love ourselves

AND LOVE all the rest

**

Sparkling in the sun

The greenhouse of our fair world

Plants will face reckoning

In this place we should love most

Nurturing living things

Must be priority now

We need to check in

On this precious rose

We must know a champion

Of beautiful humanity

Let us find a future

Where love for life shows

****

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