“a national emergency”
two days after the world spins into
I leave the gym behind
out of good sense
trying to stay healthy by leaving
a place that was making me healthy.
I take an evening walk by the Fox River
a Fitbit counting my steps instead
of a treadmill readout.
swans with necks curved in
half a Valentine’s heart.
I duck every time I hear a
red-winged blackbird call.
A muskrat swims through
what must still be winter water.
A toppled grandfather tree.
And an empty playground.
I think of 1918
and try hard to see 2020.
Back home, I sit in front of my computer.
See the living lights of Facebook,
Imagine the chatter
and raise my hand to high-five
KATHIE GIORGIO is the critically acclaimed author of five novels, two story collections, a collection of essays, and two poetry chapbooks. A full-length poetry collection, No Matter Which Way You Look, There Is More To See, will be released in 2020. Giorgio’s work appears in countless literary magazines and anthologies. She’s been nominated for the Pushcart Prize in both fiction and poetry. She’s been awarded the Outstanding Achievement Award from the Wisconsin Library Association, the Silver Pen Award for Literary Excellence, the Pencraft Awards for Literary Excellence, and has been nominated in both fiction and poetry for the Best Of The Net award. She is the director and founder of AllWriters’ Workplace & Workshop, an international creative writing studio. She lives in Waukesha, Wisconsin, with her writer-husband Michael, writer-daughter Olivia, an eccentric dog named Ursula LeGuin Giorgio, and her two cats, Edgar Allen Paw and Muse.