‘Crowns of Thorns’: A poetic response to the coronavirus crisis
Street art in Copenhagen by @welinoo on Instagram

The air is fresh
but we can’t
breathe easier
with these crowns
of thorns
we’re unable
to mask,
a sick response
to a disease
gone viral.

Gloves should
come in handy,
if not for hand-wringing
in a soap opera,
which whitewashes
the rich
antibody politic
with bail-outs
in an economic
income tsunami
drowning us
with debt
at a distance
from our livelihoods,
in pay less pursuits,
slips in separation,
home-bound in isolation,
except for
working heroes
who serve necessaries;
caring under
profiteering bosses
who couldn’t care less,
selling foodstuffs
that help stuff
big pockets,
or zooming in on
an on-line boondoggle.

This pan-demonic
atop multiple miseries
is perpetrated by
the powerful
in a class sick malady
known as capitalism,
which curses China
and sanctions
a harried
non-compliant Cuba.

The latest book from Peter Marcus, available from Granville Island Publishing.

Corporate suits
are ill-suited
to wear
the mantle
of world leadership,
the ailing
and the infected,
the laid off
and the landlords,
the workers
and the homeless,
the compassionate
and the hatemongers.

Asian nations
of the East
found resolve
with Chinese socialist characteristics,
as did
that socialist island
in the sun,
radiating its global
medical solidarity
as beacons
for peoples everywhere
to illuminate
the logical path
away from
the pathological.

Last year Granville Island Publishers in Vancouver, B.C., published ‘A Worker’s Friend,’ a book of poetry by Vancouver writer Peter Marcus. A review of the book can be read in People’s Voice.


Peter Marcus
Peter Marcus

Canadian Peter Marcus is a poet, retired hospital worker, and a long-time trade unionist and political activist. As the Communist Party federal election candidate in Vancouver East, where he has lived for almost fifty years, he calls for comprehensive action to tackle the crises of homelessness, unemployment, drug addiction, and mental illness, especially in the Downtown Eastside, the poorest urban postal code in Canada. He is campaigning for an emergency plan to build low-income and social housing, involving all levels of government.