May 2020: a poem

The month began with ventilators
the last resort for people unable
to breathe.

The month ended with outrage
the last resort for people chanting
I can’t breathe! I can’t breathe!

The month began with people marching
for the right not to wear a mask,
then at the beaches preening
for their right to party on.
Last night in the streets of America:
I can’t breathe!  I can’t breathe!

We’re suffocating.
A knee on our neck
is what the month was about.
The virus is real and a metaphor too.
I can’t breathe!  I can’t breathe!

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