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Plague Days

Plague Days

The graves were six feet deep
To halt the spread of plague
And keep six feet away
From everyone you meet
On the street —
And when you go out
Or up to the roof
Ask: should we build some chicken
Coops
With hens we could cop
From the live poultry shop
Just down the block
So we can have eggs
As the hospital ship
With the thousand beds bobs
In the Hudson
And the ambulances‘ sirens
Wail outside all night
The janitor declares
As he stares at the moon
That as more people come down sick
We may run out of things to eat
By the middle of June —
Aside from the mulberries, fat on the trees,
If we don’t plant potatoes, beans,
And other things, like leafy greens,
In the cracks of the sidewalks
Soon