I took a walk today and ended up at the Forest Hills Cemetary, the final resting place of e.e. cummings, Ann Sexton, Elma Lewis and a host of other great souls. This walk was particularly needed because it’s week two of the Coronavirus shut down in America.
Last week they ordered us to practice social distancing, like try not to meet up with people, but call or Zoom them into your computer screen.
This week we’ve been warned to keep 6 feet between ourselves and the next person, basically, stay in the house.
All of the places I like to frequent on a Friday night, like Ashmont Grill — just a short walk from my house in Dorchester — have been shut down.
Arts and cultural institutions, specifically theatres and places that bring people together for laughter and the simple reminder that we’re all in this together, are closed indefinitely without a contingency plan in place. Businesses that offer a gathering place for people have had to lay off thousands of employees due to this thing. We don’t know when or how it will pass. The safety of people is paramount and as a result, we need to stay away from each other. Someone even appropriated Emma Lazurus. They said, “Until all of us are safe, we are none of us safe.”
Italy is in tears.
California is on lockdown.
Boston is thinking.
I’m taking long walks and reflecting on this solemn moment in time.