Viral Avoidance Two-Step
Maria slipped through the mangrove swamps—apropos, considering the strangeness of the inland country—all manner of bird calls but not a single bird visible.
She retraced the miles back south to her home town by the sea—but was chased out by the ever widening viral curtain, it swept out in waves from the airports, inundated the ports, and streamed in with the masses of vacationers flowing south.
Now she was certain that her hopeful attempt to visit the past was a mistake, and her family was in the throes of the viral avoidance two-step. It was a most foul dance. It was the most unfortunate of synchronicities.
The virus was traveling untrammeled via the interstates—it was flooding the country: north, south, east, west. The streets were teeming with virus. The waysides and rest stops on the road, the restaurants and inns, all points billowed with bugs. Tidal wave after tidal wave of sickness.
There was plannifying and scarifying required. She’d lay low back among the mangroves and cottonmouths, and figure out her next move.
“Perhaps the world will end at the kitchen table, while we are
laughing and crying, eating of the last sweet bite.”
— Joy Harjo / “Perhaps the World Ends Here”