White lines mark where we stand
Where we’re meant to wait and
Masks obscure our careful smiles
It’s going to be weird for a wee while
2020 fashion, protective style
Artist’s lose out and writers are poor
Financial strife, it’s the new lore
While the arts keep us sane throughout the lockdown
They’ve kind of been forgotten now we’re allowed back in town
Government subsidies have been given out
It’s not enough, The Opposition shouts
Health versus economy, the dollars, the cents
Everyday people, we’re all fucking tense
The budget is announced, it is heard
The nation hanging on Grant’s every word
Unemployment, state housing, a tourism industry boost
Encouraging people to spend, their dollars are loose
Heralding the call of the spender
We’re all waiting to hear back from the lender
Lives saved of a business lost?
What will it all amount to?
How will we measure the True Cost?
Masks and scarves worn as protection
Anything we can do to keep away the infection
Worried eyes gleam dark over the mask
Shopping has become a dangerous task
Safety is the question we all ask
Squirt of sanitiser, we clean our hands
We’re happy we live in so-called Distant Lands
Aotearoa is a place far-away
We’re protected as long as border restrictions stay
Tourism providers ask, how long til we open, if i may?
Cafe orders made, social distancing rules
There’s two metre spaced out bar stools
Pick up and collect, will this be the new norm?
It feels like a nice piece of ordinary after the Covid storm.
I wrote this poem in friendly creative competition with my father towards the end of the month-long Aotearoa New Zealand 2020 Lockdown. I utilised rhyme schemes and cultural reflection to communicate both personal and political views on the Covid 19 situation at the time.
I hope this poem is both of its time (a snapshot of a person in a historical moment) and that it can also be read as a more universal reflection on a world changing event.