We will remember the doctors and the nurses, exhausted,
frightened, discouraged, their faces smothered in masks.
We will remember those who delivered our groceries and medicines,
the affectionate calls saying: “I just wanted to hear your voice”.
We will remember the lessons of resilience from those who deal with death every day.
And when the fear is gone, we will regret the passing of these days,
remembering the moving choruses from the balconies,
that off-tune national anthem belted out,
even when it says: “we are ready to die,”
we who are not ready for death at all,
hanging onto life all of us: the young, the old, the ill.
We will remember the silence in the streets and the birds whose songs have returned,
the crisp morning air with the smell of Spring,
the conversations of dogs barking from balconies,
the cookies we made with the children,
the stories and the poems on YouTube,
laughing like crazy at masterpieces of self-irony,
the best cure against immuno-deficiency,
as well as deficiency.
Scholars and students trying out distance learning,
the videos of actors and showmen at home in their sweatshirts,
saying we’re all equal,
wishing well over the distance,
a people re-discovering itself around a Premier who we’d never imagined could be so good.
I cried when I saw the people of the Zen singing the national anthem in their stairwells,
and I don’t care if someone, wherever they live, is singing just to be seen.
We are a people, and we are growing up.
I don’t want everything to go back to the way it was,
I ask and I hope that our humanity remains, that of these days.