VOICES FROM THE FIRE: Leah Mueller

Pandemic Neoliberals

Tacoma, before

everything went to hell:

eating fresh salmon and

drinking martinis

against a sunset backdrop

of Puget Sound

moments before

the car crashed

into a utility pole

at ninety miles per hour

and nobody

survived the accident.

Tow away the wreckage,

no one wants to see it.

Take off your facemask,

order another martini.

None of this is normal, but

it’s good enough for you.

Cocoon

Safe.

Safer.

Safest.

Make a list

of your fears,

so you

can cover

each base, and

save yourself

from harm.

A hazmat suit

works in

a pinch.

If your

hazmat suit

doesn’t fit

right, some

air could leak in,

and the whole

precaution would

be for naught.

Better stay

home forever,

stare at the wall,

grip your

sofa armrests

tight in your

sweaty hands,

and for God’s sake,

never shower,

mow your lawn,

or use the stove,

because home

is the most

dangerous place

of all.

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