“I feel like I’m gonna die!”
You shout with glee
Signaling that I’ve pushed you hard enough
At the top of the arc, it must feel
As though you will float away
Like a birthday balloon
Leaving far behind the sign, zip-tied
To the swing set, that reads:


Yet here we are, breaking the rule
Masks in pockets
On a January Saturday in the deserted park
Our potentially poisonous breaths
Visible in the freezing air
Before drifting harmlessly away

“I feel safe!”
You yell
That’s my cue to resume
The work of shoving you with such force
That you just might get blasted
Into the stratosphere on a path for the half moon
Hanging lazily in the early evening sky

240,000 thousand miles away
Gray and grim
Freed from the weight of our world
The man in the moon
Hasn’t got a drop to sip
And no virus to escape
No harsh word to let slip
Nowhere for fear to take shape

He has nothing to do
But reflect the sun’s light and
Inspire jealousy in the world below
Where a boy who knows dinnertime’s soon
Screams, “I feel safe!”
And so we are
Until further notice

— 30 —