While out walking my dog Jimmy Lambchop yesterday, I came across the following evocative poem that a neighbor had taped to her front yard’s Little Free Library box.
I was so moved by it that I came home and Googled the poet so that I could present her poem to you. You might have already read it since, apparently, it’s gone viral–an ironic term these days.
It was written in March 2020 by Kitty O’Meara, a former teacher and chaplain from Wisconsin. She and her husband live with five dogs and three cats. She wrote this poem “while trying to process the catastrophic news surrounding the spread of the coronavirus.” Here is her poem:
And the People Stayed Home
And the people stayed home.
And read books, and listened, and rested,
and exercised, and made art, and played games,
and learned new ways of being, and were still.
And listened more deeply.
Some meditated, some prayed, some danced.
Some met their shadows.
And the people began to think differently.
And the people healed.
And, in the absence of people living in ignorant,
dangerous, mindless, and heartless ways,
the earth began to heal.
And when the danger passed, and the people joined together again,
they grieved their losses, and made new choices, and dreamed new images,
and created new ways to live and heal the earth fully,
as they had been healed.
So get a clue, Readers. I hope many of you have “create[d] new ways to live and heal the earth fully” as you continue to wind your way through this unprecedented time. Please be safe, stay home, and stay well.