410,336

piles of names,
ghosts–absent empty
erased gone

erased, gone–
we can’t remember
comprehend

comprehend
them—we are finite
thinkers, minds

thinkers, minds
too crammed with daily
survival

survival–
and yet why is it
no one asks

no one asks
us to stop listen
a moment

a moment–
so many voices
now silent

now silent—
is it too much of
a burden

a burden
to carry them here
alongside

alongside
the living—hold them,
take them in

take them in–
mourn–no longer just
piles of names

For Frank Tassone’s haikai challenge #174 justice.

Art from my Metropolis post last May amidst the height of the NYC pandemic, when much of the rest of the country thought it was our fault, and would stay here. It was a relief to see our President ask us to remember all of those who have been lost–not just in NYC, but from every corner of the United States and also the world.

29 thoughts on “410,336

  1. Beyond sad to stop, listen and remember the horror that surrounds us in these days of Covid. Too many piles of names. Your collage freezes emotion into a moment acknowledgement and reverent silence.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. There has been no clear advice anywhere about how to cope with this virus, but at least most governments have understood that it is a killer and some scientific line has to be followed to deal with it. Denying the evidence is the only thing that some presidents have been good at.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Yes, most people confronted with the victims of their ‘rights’ would admit that they didn’t want that to happen. Whether they accept the connection between the tragedies they’re witnessing and their ‘rights’ is another thing. Denial of the evidence is something we all find very easy to do.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I count myself lucky to be one of the “bleeding hearts” mocked for grieving when none of “my own” has yet to die. This perfectly captures the horror of apathy.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Thank you so much for sharing this. It’s beautiful and raw and honest, and I have been rereading it over and over. You’ve made something so compelling that I am forced to linger on it, and in turn, forced to consider its subject, those hundreds of thousands of named individuals killed by the virus. It’s a real act of tribute on your part.
    I’d like to mention the poem in my next discomfort reading post, if I may?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree Ken. The vaccine seemed to give hope, but if we can’t get vaccinated…well it’s been making me more anxious, not less. You have to be lucky here to even get an appointment, and then half the time they get cancelled anyway. Still, I’m mostly able to keep to myself, so I’m better off than many.

      Liked by 1 person

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