“Yoda Knows No.1” © Bonnie Matthews Brock



The Empathic Association
faded as a force when card-carrying
members practiced social-distancing –
this time due to a pandemic.

Though home viewers
binge-watched movies
and reports state some novel
spikes in library circulation
through curbside pickup,
math skills declined:
1 + 1 = 1 + 1.
The rout to a six foot circumference
proved more than a vaccination.

Platonic throbs relate only so far
to keep facts from acts.
Long after hand sanitizer
and masked help-teams hold up
the patient line, electronic surveillance
frisks for resistance and credit cards.

Soon for the audience, everybody,
the ends justify for the mean spirits
that imagine sniggers, not hurray.


Rich Murphy’s book-length collection of essays on poetry and poetics, Prophet Voice was published in June 2020 from Common Ground Research Network. He sserves as guest lecturer and adjunct faculty at MassArt and UMass Boston and as an associate for Grid Books.

Bonnie Matthews Brock is a Florida-based photographer, as well as a school psychologist. Her images have been published in Ibbetson Street, The Somerville Times, Oddball Magazine, Beyond Words Literary Magazine, and Wild Roof Journal. Her work is archived at Harvard University, the University of Buffalo, and Poets House in NYC. Bonnie loves to capture, in images, a very wide range of subjects, and to learn and experiment with shooting and editing techniques.