They Didn’t Tell You

They didn’t tell you when you trustingly submitted to a covid test that you’d have to quarantine for fourteen days even if you tested negative.

They didn’t tell you the queues would be so long, could take up to ten hours to be tested, and that there were no toilet facilities available, no hot dog stands

And they certainly didn’t tell you a fortnight in quarantine by yourself would be as gruelling, as solipsistic as a fortnight in solitary in a maximum security prison — and that you never even get to see your jailer

There is no training for this.

And anyway you’ve only got eight more days of madness to look forward to, so it isn’t all bad

Until you realize at the very end, your state’s in hard lockdown for at least a week so you have to go through it all over again

The Rant that became a Poem

I’m always amazed how they go in

Without thinking

Then close the steel doors on themselves.

Haven’t these people any imagination?

Sometimes they are bunched up in there

like sardines in a can.

Speaking of cans I can’t help thinking of the Kursk

how those poor submariners were coffined

in a can.

Speaking of coffins, that’s what they remind me of.

Lifts.

Vertical coffins.

Going Down?

My counsellor says I have too vivid an imagination.

Isn’t that what writers are supposed to have?

Anything can happen.

I think of ‘The Towering Inferno’ and those people

plummeting to their deaths when the lift cables

snap

or in ‘Speed’ when they are cut.

And my counsellor says to calm my farm!

Speaking of farms I think of cattle being trucked

to the slaughterhouse and not knowing

till it’s too late.

And speaking of not knowing, and I promise I won’t

speak of ‘speaking of’ again but I bet poor old Nicolas White

never knew when he stepped into an elevator back in 2008

that he would be trapped in it for 41 hours.

No food. No drink. No cell phone. No company.

 I don’t know if those people got out at the other end

or not

but I’m taking the stairs.

The Magic Button

עלי_באבא_מתחבא_על_העץ

I was locked in a cab once

when the driver

went off

to get a can of petrol

& I wanted

to get out.

My hands flew all over the place.

 

Then the driver when he got back

bent down

& showed me

The Magic Button

at the base of the passenger side door handle.

All you had to do was pop it

& Open Sesame!

 

It’d be good, I thought,

to have a magic button each time

you were locked in

somewhere unpleasant:

 

Like a meeting you couldn’t get out of,

A Xmas get together that had turned ugly

a flight that went on far too long

Or a poem you couldn’t find a way out from.

 

* pic from Wiki-commons