Photography, Poetry and Art Projects by Ciaran Burke

If, in times of Covid

If, you find yourself alone and adrift
when all around you are swimming walking, running, dancing for charity
as you float through days lost at sea.I

If, you are lost on a wayward current
as others swim with a confidence
to the shores of self congratulation
don't let the jealous riptides carry you away.

If, a trip to the bottle bank is very over due
and you are hiding empty bottles beneath
incriminating pizza boxes and snitching biscuit tins while take away cartons taunt.

If, your banana bread burnt and binned
was a charred and bitter crusted loaf
without resemblance to the millions
of self loving wanker Facebook boasts.I

If, having exhausted the entirety of Netflix
you find yourself searching Disney plus
while your neighbour mows the perfect lawn
say that you are a re-wilding naturalist.

If, your bathroom scales has betrayed you
the red needle points to self loathing shame 
insults you and fills you with self doubt
it really is just that your laundry has shrunk.

If, your children hate home schooling
unlike the paragons of desktop diligence
while yours work for a master's in idleness
don't be fooled by smug parental posts.

If, you are able to take a big deep breath
inhale two lungs full of cold Spring air
shrug off the guilt, reject the despair
for you are alive, just with longer hair.

Ciaran Burke
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