Colds in the Time of Pandemics



Colds in the Time of Pandemics


My mind floats in a haze

antibiotics and swabs and tissues

crinkled, used, worn out, tossed

away, like they were nothing,

like this is nothing.

But it’s not.

There used to be a false sense of security,

a series of lines hinting to

an inherent structure.

Now, there are no lines,

just fledgling dashes inferring order,

hearkening to before—

before when everything was normal,

normal when nothing was real,

real, like the sting in my throat.

Fear grips and snakes around my tonsils.

A deluge of mucus and upending questions.

Danger lurking and invisible and wrought.

These four walls keep me safe,

envelop me until they are all I see.

And there is no longer the yearning for before,

for the life that invigorated and infuriated,

for the close moments and shared drinks,

for the seats with no elbow room,

for sweaty dancefloors and strange embraces.

There’s only gratitude for the common cold

and the solitude that accompanies it.

Nicole Bird

Nicole's career began with a degree in Creative Writing. Her focus then shifted to garnering degrees in Film Production and Screenwriting. Afterwards, Nicole worked in film, while writing and producing her own short films. Now, Nicole works as a Creative Writing professor and is currently at work on a collection of poetry, as well as honing her gluten free baking skills developed during the 2020 quarantine.


  1. we forget other ailments have not gone away in the midst of the pandemic.

Previous Post Next Post