Coronavirus blues

Daydreaming in aisle five
toothpaste and shampoo
silent sparkling commerce
air conditioned
red arrows on scuffed white tile
a guide in the labyrinth
whole aisles are wastelands
handwritten signs: OUT OF STOCK
no one looks at me
not masked employees
ignoring everyone
not shoppers
some unmasked
others kind, warm
smiling behind masks
at the absurdity
a blackbird loops above the bakery
scouting crumbs
I’ve been here too long
they don’t have what I need

back in the car I
mask down
never dreamed I’d need
masks for my family

through partially deserted streets
atomic sunlight
paranoid and guilty
about what I might now carry

MORE: See all of our Write On, Colorado entries and learn how to submit your own here.

T.J. McAvoy is a journalist and novelist and a Denverite taking a brief sabbatical from the city to live in Brighton.