GOODBYE, 2020 (in Three Poems)

Covid TV Winter Snow

December 18, 2020

My cable is disabled.
Local channels, only,

Beyond basic,
Snow—pixelated screen,
Sound fading in and out,

First disrupting the
most-watched channel band-width—
59 to 208—gone.

CNN and The Weather Channel
snowed out.

Other band-withs,
usually ignored,
come into view:

On SyFy, an old CSI: LV and
a never-before-noticed
Bruce Willis shoot-em-up

distracted me
for 3 whole hours, until
a second disruption,

leaving only the
original analog stations—
3 major networks and PBS.

Meanwhile, the East Coast
snowstorm that dropped
ice and snow

from D.C. to Maine
is what it took to make
the cable guy to

leave his comfy, Covid lair,
and restore
my barren air waves.

End of a Terrible Year


There were termites in the bed post.
I could hear them chomping on the wood,
see their white writhing masses
crawling up and down through the hole
where the post’s ball-top used to be.
But no one else could.

In Drama class, I tried to create
a pantomime of the fear.

No one could hear.
I was a poor Director.

I can still see my brunette classmate
(fledgling actress) racing
back and forth across the stage,
feigning terror from an unseen enemy,
the scene falling flat,
the emotion unconveyed,

the mediocre grade,
symbol of a dismal junior year.

Why do I remember,
forty-seven years later,
this moment of failure,
at the end of a terrible year?

Hello, 2021

January 1, 2021

Woke up this morning,
feeling hung over
after a night of
frantic anticipation:

Ate more food in one day
than in the entire month
of December—

a hearty brunch
of buttermilk pancakes
topped with maple syrup
and strawberry preserves
with a side of sausage,
washed down with
the best damned cup of coffee
I ever made.

The evening nosh—
pickled herring and onions
with a side of garlic/herb crackers
and, later, Christmas nuts,
all washed down with
Welch’s grape sparkling
non-alcoholic cocktail
tasting like a fine wine—

satisfied my craving
while I watched
The Twilight Zone Marathon
and traded wisecracks
and little-known facts
about favorite episodes,

until 11:45 pm, when I switched
over to the impending ball drop
from Times Square.
Then, back to TZ fare.

Woke up this morning
at 8:30 am,
daylight come too soon
and a belly too full of
poorly digested food.

A dark, lazy, rainy
First Day of the New Year,
brightened by a phone call—
Your stimulus check is here!

“No Way!” I yelled into the phone,
certain it was a prank;
Besides, last I checked,
The stimulus was still in dispute.

But, sure enough,
the caller told the truth.

Somehow, I had missed the news
all week, submersed,
as I was, with the Holidays.

Now, the glitter/glimmer
of that shiny news
has faded into oblivion,

as I search for ways
to keep this gift a givin’
another day of livin’,

in this New Year just beginning.

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