Everyone is grieving

Everyone is grieving.
The first-year university student who
Looked forward to some independence
And two minute noodle meals
Now sits staring at a screen.
The pilot who once travelled the globe and is now grounded and scrambling to
reinvent himself at fifty.
The lecturer who teaches integration like it matters when she just lost her father.
The petrol attendant who fills your car with a smile but recently became
the head of a three-person household,
The grade four learner who acts out at school because he misses what was normal:
sport, lessons without masks, no one shouting “social distancing” at every turn.
The entrepreneur who launched her dream online shop, only to close it months later and now worries about feeding her family.
The Grade 12 learner who dreamt of wearing a crimson red dress to her dance, one she has imagined since she was 5.
The family who just lost three members at once.
Three
People
Are gone.
Women and girls who may lose their right to education and dignity.
Men who would rather take their chances holding onto a plane taking off,
Than face the reality that unfolds.
Everyone is grieving,
In some way
For dreams,
For people,
For a future that looks
Very much like
A sci-fi horror movie
(With helpless babies
Passed over a barbwire fence)
Everyone
Is
Grieving.

Copyright Hiraeth 2021