by C. H. Wells

Inspired by:
A Visit From St Nicholas/’Twas The Night Before Christmas
… with apologies to the author.

‘Twas months after COVID-19 came around;
Few people were stirring, with most gone to ground.
The gloves that were left were stacked up with the the masks,
As hospital workers prepared for their tasks.

World trav’llers were restless, all stuck in their homes,
As they waited for signs of an ache in their bones;
While those on a cruise that they thought would be quick
Had found a new meaning for feeling ‘sea sick.’

From Wuhan to Iran and places far west,
It had, in a twinkling, infected the rest.
It raged through each country, this wee Judas bug,
Delivering death on a kiss or a hug.

Our leaders were challenged to find the right touch:
Some were quite brilliant, and some … er … not so much.
Every great crisis results in the same:
Those who take action … and those who lay blame.

But every disaster bestows on us, too,
Good works and great workers to help take us through.
From businesses willing to try a new twist,
To doers and givers too many to list:

Manufacturers, drivers, and cashiers, and clerks,
And all of the others who do vital works;
Healers and carers; protectors on call:
Well, Kudos! and Kudos! and Kudos! to all.

As we watch while statistics rise up like a tide,
Remember that people – not numbers – have died.
But we’ll face this together. We’re in the same boat.
So here’s some advice to help keep us afloat:

Cough, sneeze or fever, and shortness of breath,
These are the things that could lead to your death.
Aching and weakness; intestines that spew;
These could be symptoms that also warn you.

But before you run off to that hospital clinic –
Remember, my friend, that there’s sick people in it!
If you’re really afraid, you should call a health-line.
The likelihood is, it will turn out just fine.

Yet celebrities, leaders, and all kinds of folk,
Can tell you that having this thing is no joke.
There’s no one on Earth who is safe from this pest,
So keep to yourself, and stay close to the nest.

Read a good book, play a game, take a walk.
Use e-devices to meet or to talk.
Shop when you must, show respect; wash your hands;
Use the good sense that this crisis demands.

As bankruptcies rise, and as stock markets crash;
While we fear for our welfare, and grow short on cash:
Be patient Don’t panic … Seek help … Spare a dime …
Remember that all will be well, in good time.

Remind  friends and neighbors that: “This, too, shall pass.”
That we’ll weather this storm if we do it with class.
We’ll all lick our wounds and we’ll start a new day …
Oh, wait! … lick our sleeves, now? Ya, that’s what they say!

We’ve learned, while we’re fighting this deadly microbe,
That we’ve “friends we’ve not met yet” all over the globe.
So there’s one final word it suffices to say:
Stay friendly! – Just do it from six feet away!