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A news poem

Twenty Twenty

A poem submitted by reader Vicki Gotkin:

Was it a new decade that began that year?
A debate spanning centuries makes nothing clear.
The United States Navy says not quite yet,
Farmers’ Almanac readers also hedge that bet.
Gregorian calendars establish the notion
Anno domini sets the counting in motion.
Whether it’s zero or whether it’s one,
Changes little when recalling the damage it’s done.

Perhaps we can’t blame the calendar year,
Whether decade anew or one to premier.
Twenty Twenty memorialized countless defeats,
Fires, and earthquakes, and riots in streets.
But none quite as marked as the virus we call
“Corona,” a crown to annihilate us all.

Face masks, distancing, and hygienic measures,
Couldn’t make up for all of our sacrificed pleasures.
Weddings and concerts, graduations upended,
Displays of affection indefinitely suspended.
PPE notwithstanding, the hospitals heaved,
ICU beds depleted at rates none conceived.
The number of corpses piled up by the hour
As hoarders and bakers ran out of white flour.

“Where’s the president?” we pleaded, with tears in our eyes,
He’s golfing with cronies, telling thousands of lies.
Each day he’s in office, there’s less of a chance
That science or knowledge will ever advance.
Concluding Trump’s tenure would stem the infections
That putrefied politics, placed doubt on elections.

But science and sanity prevailed at last,
A vaccine is coming, the die has been cast.
The first to receive this coveted prize
Are those who survived the lack of supplies.
COVID-19 overwhelmed first responders
Who lacked resources because of what lawmakers squandered.
Reporters of woe and the cruelest afflictions
Now inculcate faith with encouraging predictions.

Perhaps the next decade if that is our choice
To describe the new year with a unified voice,
Will usher support for the work of the scores
Of mortals committed to opening doors,
To optimism, trust in the findings of others
To heal what remains for our sisters and brothers.

In the year Twenty-one, it’s uncertain to know
Whether myths told by morons will continue to grow,
Depleting our patience but increasing our ire
Against those who refuse to believe or inspire.
Instead, how ’bout lauding the efforts of folks,
Whose grand contributions merit positive strokes,
And rejoice in the genius of women and men
Who’re bound to restore our compassion again.

- 30 -
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courtesy Mike Dana

The sun rises over Tucson on Sunday morning, Dec. 27. 'We moved to Tucson 18 months ago from the East Coast. We love Tucson. People are great, weather Is fantastic, and the views are spectacular.' — reader Mike Dana