Poems of the Week

Prayers for the Front Line

by Julia Griffin

Not for the grand politicos, with room to keep their distance,
Who haggle over ways to come to billionnaires’ assistance,
But for the half-paid cooks who fill their daily online orders,
And all the late-night cleaners with relations at the borders.

Not for the big employers, Mr. Gates and Mr. Bezos,
With half the world’s economy dependent on their say-sos,
But for the purchase-processors who find the goods and sort them,
The truckers and the mailers who must lift them and transport them.

Not for the big insurers with their minds on graphs and vectors,
But for the nursing orderlies and sickroom disinfectors.
Not for myself, new on-line Prof (compelled by others’ prudence),
But for the food-store checkout staff (who now include my students).