Poem a Day: 20

Today’s Prompts are Isolation, and Seven Sins.

Isolation and the Seven Sins
by Beth Weaver-Kreider

The first one is coughing, right?
Or. . .coughing without covering your mouth,
or coughing into your hand instead of your elbow.
Does sneezing belong here, too,
or is it just a matter of degree:
an uncovered cough goes ten feet
while a sneeze blasts twenty-seven.

The second is touching your face.
Don’t touch your face!
Don’t scratch your nose!
Don’t rub your eyes!

Then there’s forgetting
to wash your hands,
or not using soap,
or not singing Happy Birthday
twice through while you wash.
I’m having a whole lot of birthdays lately.

Getting too close to people
who don’t live in your house,
that’s the fourth one—
sidling up to strangers in stores,
saying, “Is this the line?”
while they edge away
from you as politely as they dare.

Three more? Okay. Here’s one:
Not wearing a mask in public.
Don’t go to the bank
unless you look you’re
going to rob the bank.
You’ve got to learn
how to smile with your eyes.

Number six is definitely hoarding.
Nobody needs that much toilet paper, hon.

And the seventh. Sloth? Is that one?
I’m pretty sure I heard that one,
but maybe that’s a deadly sin.
Aren’t these deadly sins, too?

What do you think?

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