Maggie Rue Hess – Canto in the Time of Corona Virus – Pandemic

 Canto in the Time of Coronavirus
by Maggie Rue Hess

When your neighbor
began singing
from his balcony
you knew
the caged bird
was no metaphor,

viva la nostra Siena
winging over
the empty alleyways, the parked cars.

     Dogs confused the chorus, 
yet the harmony rose
from several floors
each bar a love song
locked in a familiar key,
beautiful Siena.

Buildings still canary yellow
in a night coughing darkness,
isolation broken like a bad fever.

and if we are still breathing,
we are singing.


Maggie Rue Hess is a high school English teacher and writer living in San Antonio, TX. During the summer, she takes road trips and runs a creative writing camp.