restrictive social distance by Jules Blue

This poem was an entrant in the Ledbury Poetry Festival – Lockdown Poems (July 2020). Visit this and other poems at

is it easy looking backwards now to former scenes of exuberance and capitalist extravagance in markets of gossip of dross and of hip to the tip of the tittle-tattle-tonguing cultural exchange of people passing people passing on people on stupendously-expensive pendulous pedals and heels pedalling the confetti masquerade of coffee-wine-café crowds whose accessorising identities were allowed to hang around in a stolen dance of sinful syntax seemingly untaxable beneath beautiful bejewelled architectures of children playing with unsupervised children contracting the social abstract all over like over-spilling flower-stalls like bursting fountains like a pandemic virus of white noise driven by the hunger for sensation behind the trance of conformity or the rolling out radioactive 5G enormity but is there still a heart between brain and loin in our highest of places? What beheld us? A virus of sorts? An aerosolised globalised lab-test? An anti-pollution revolution? Revelation of a new world order? A dislike of sports? No: restrictive social distancing.

so now to scenes of dancing in sun-printed patterns of an eternal spring lining the darkest spectral voids of emptied playgrounds and urbanised sun-pastelled facades fading fast with the last fading free light of free trades broken by the merciless-indifferent cruel-oppressive happy-ignorant fortunate-mad undignified-arrogant no-science-in-conscience-closed-circle straightjacketing melancholy of births deaths marriages all equally quietened by desensitised masses taking classes in futile binary confrontations with drones and surveillance whilst the silent forgotten majority plead for emotional death beyond emergent churches jostling for urgent face-times as children sad as cut flowers are reduced to mass-produced mechanised expressions trained to order endless order expressing anaesthetised tongues of barbaric alienation in incalculable sadness anonymising whose indifference to the political-non-political soi-disant social contract of neutralised anguish as complete as aloneness and subservience to incommunicable fears and institutionalised freedoms of a politics that reads like a sentence: from Left to Right in just a few words: looking forward to looking back again

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