Hour Twenty-Four

The Covid Years (a golden shovel from Chen-Chen’s I invite My Parents to a Dinner Party.

Can this be called orchestrating
a family? If this day and every
day there are teeth brushed, and the kids watch the sidewalk for movement.
A year without strangers, has blessed them with a love of
anyone they do not spend every day with, a
problem for our future selves to deal with. We call supper proper
every time the kids eat 5 bites without leaving the family
table. Allowing your kids to go feral is as
much a part of the pandemic as masks, if
you ask the parents I know. A
part of a grand tradition no one planed on – our pair

of girls with their bare feet and the laughs of
lions are no more scary
in the scheme of things, than the whole future, spread out like a map – known yet
unknown. One can only connect so deeply
with a place they have never been incompetent.

16 thoughts on “Hour Twenty-Four

  1. This is beautiful Caitlin. This is a stunning summary of how COVID has affected your family. I love the various images and especially of the girls laughing as lions and being feral… Wonderful imagery!

  2. I know many families that drew a low line across what was acceptable from children. There were probably many more who didn’t admit it but also set low lines. This is an honest admission and think of the fun they will recall in the future!

  3. “our pair/of girls with their bare feet and the laughs of
    lions are no more scary/in the scheme of things, than the whole future, spread out like a map – known yet
    unknown. One can only connect so deeply
    with a place they have never been incompetent.”

    resonated with me so deeply, knowing the ways you have tried to birth joy out of terror during this time. I love the idea of the deep connection to places we “have never been incompetent.” It’s so real and true and something I had never considered. I love how your work always does that for me: brings to the surface all of these things living in me I had never fully considered. Thank you, again…always, for sharing your gift.

  4. Caitlin, I just commented on Ofuma’s pandemic poem.
    And now this, from a mother’s viewpoint.
    It’s too cold in Scotland for kids to run bare feet, but I watched my neighbours girls go ‘feral’ and chuckled as I read.
    Seriously though, how do you do it? Organise such a huge event, write brilliantly till the end, and continue to be nice?
    Much love!

  5. I love this poem, Caitlin! From the starting images of orchestrating a family to the blunt, bold insight of:
    “Allowing your kids to go feral is as
    much a part of the pandemic as masks, if
    you ask the parents I know.”

    to the poem’s haunting ending. Thank you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *