Saturday, January 30, 2021


In 2020
we found out
you no longer need
a gat
or bomb
to set it off
spark panic
let 'em know
who got the juice

In 2020 and beyond
without a mask
it's all you
you the one
got 'em wincin'

You out here packin'
not tellin'
you ain't the one
to be fucked wit'

You say
come at me
put your life
in my hands
git closer than
six feet
feel the ferocity
of this tainted breath
trashing your orifices
let these
hazardous particles
from this exposed
sneeze and cough
I sullied the space with
engulf the membranes
of your nose
slither through your parted-lip grin
cut a rug on your tongue
roughhouse in your throat
picnic on your hands
the same diseased hands
I watch you mindlessly rub
your irritated eyes with
while I smile in your face
and literally
kill you

But not softly
my shit potent
more lethal
than carbon monoxide
snatch up your whole family
all your Day Ones
your baes and babies
in a single birthday party
graduation celebration
holiday dinner
cease all that
huggin', touchin', and kissin'
faster than a prison guard
on visit day
separate you
from your treasured beloved
on their deathbed
saying your sob-filled goodbyes
from the other side
of a hospital window
tracing I love yous
across the glass
from your house
or the hospital lobby
on Zoom
instead of up close
holding their hand
ushering them on to the afterlife
like your spirit needs

without a mask
21st-century firing line
walking hot spot
black sheep of humanity
your naked mug
banned from all businesses
illegal in some states
encountering you
is like being thrust
into an unexpected game
of Russian roulette

In 2020 and beyond
don't forget
to cue Bell Biv DeVoe:
never trust a bare face
and a smile

©2021 Charlene E. Green