photo ©the scientist, 2020

My dogs are alive

My wife and daughter are alive

My sons are alive


My brother is alive.

My sister is alive.

My mother is alive.

My niece is alive.


My friends are alive

My Writing Project family is alive


I am alive





My dogs don’t seem too worried as long as I walk them

Julie and Natalie wonder if they are infected

Willy is self-isolating and Andrew is on an island – now.

My brother is thinking about COVID economic-activism

My sister is thinking about the imminent closing of NYC borders

My mother is thinking about my brother, sister, me, her siblings, and our children

My niece is thinking about where her parents should be

My friend Jeff is thinking about how his new, radiation-induced coughing worries others

His Chinese-American doctor asks him to imagine being Chinese-American and coughing.


I am swimming through each day

With no lanes,

No water

No flip turns

No arm strength,

Alternating breaths


I am walking with dogs

I am loving Julie and Natalie

In their oh-so-near quarantine

Many feet away until tests may

close our physical gap.


I am talking to family and friends

and promise to

hold space

in my community and networks

for loving, learning

And hoping.



©Tom Meyer. 2020


                   Tom Meyer, a BAWP TC since 1991, is a founding Director of the Hudson Valley Writing Project and Associate Professor in the Department of Teaching and Learning at SUNY New Paltz. Among his hobbies are writing and reading poetry, bicycle riding, gardening, rooting for the Golden State Warriors, and hiking with his dogs and family (not necessarily in that order).


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