The Day the Sun Didn’t Rise

 Soft hair on my face tickles me awake
 A small voice Mom
 there is something wrong with my body
 I’m wide awake, but it is still night time
 The clock, the only light
 teases us with its numbered face, 7:15
 No sweetie I reply it is morning time
 it’s just dark outside today
 Sleepiness, my costume, mirrors calm
 we read morning stories by lamp light
 time to get ready for school!
 discordant in the dim room
 The soft padding of small feet on stairs
 I leap from bed to window
 the sun hangs feebly in eastern sky
 red disc muted and dull 
 It is week two of zoom school
 and feigning normalcy 
 is the new gold standard of parenting
 we turn on lights, power the screen
 I want to shout it is not your body 
 that is wrong, child, it is the world!
 I kiss soft hair as I walk past
 turn the air filters up high
 the darkened windows 
 reflect her image
 body dwarfed by the monitor
 which she stares at dutifully 
 distant as the hidden sun
 a teacher attempts to wrangle
 a class of 6-year olds 
 from her square in the box
 All day we are flooded with photos
 the golden gate bridge 
 the blood red light
 and the word “apocalypse” 
 Inside homes across the bay
 we make forts, play dance games
 smoke so thick it erases the sun
 is just another day 


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