This was a fun and liberating creative writing exercise: I went back through my journals dating from the start of the coronavirus closures and read through my scribbles. I pulled out words and phrases that jumped out at me. Once I pieced them together I had created a poem that described the twisted and ragged weeks of quarantine and reopening. I ended up keeping the phrases in (mostly) chronological order, because I felt like the choppy, agitated flow was pretty representative of my emotional state.
This process was similar to “Black-Out Poetry.” You use a marker to strike-through most of a text, leaving only a few words or phrases visible. Those words join together to form the new piece of writing.
Pandemic Journaling (March 13, 2020 to present) My journey is not your journey (in case anything resonates). So... It’s isolating. Swim for the surface, whatever the hell that means. Even the small beauties of now pump you full of anxiety. Having a hard time accepting this trust fall? Find the Good (but, ah, it’s maddeningly elusive!) Sweep away the past. Should I get permission? No, now is the time. Mostly. I guess I am Becoming. ©Vixen Lea
If you have been keeping a journal during this time, I encourage you to try this for yourself! Share your “pandemic journaling” poems in the comments. I think it would be interesting to see what emerges for different people during this odd shared experience.
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