Book Review: The Plague by Albert Camus

I have a (slight) problem with going on book-buying binges. When I feel anxious, sometimes I buy a book. I’ve reined in this annoying tendency recently to cut expenses. But when the pandemic hit in early March, I saw an essay about Albert Camus’ novel, The Plague, and knew I immediately had to read it.

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Keeping the Faith (a poem)

Garbage piles up on street corners, you can smell it

everywhere you go – a trash crisis, another effect

of the pandemic, giving the town an apocalyptic feel

as we deal with a failing economy, killer virus,

foreboding sense that we’re plunging into an abyss –

but excuse me, miss, we’re resilient, us humans,

even if rubbish surrounds us and the president astounds us,

we find a way to keep the faith.

(Photo by chris liu on Unsplash)

Impending Doom (a poem)

Where do those neighbors get their money?

They’re up late on weeknights, drinking beer,

playing games in the street – the young woman

has glazed eyes, she’s always stoned;

the boyfriend doesn’t have a care

in the world, in a world

where so many are dying

and a feeling of impending doom

clutches us by the throat.

(Photo by Mika Baumeister on Unsplash)

Adjusting to the ‘New Normal’

Here we are, nearly four months into the pandemic. The whole thing has been a very strange experience, for all us. It’s been a shared experience across the planet, though some countries have managed it better than others. I’m learning that the ability to adapt is so important.

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Pandemic Nothingness (a poem)

There’s unreality in this isolation –

survivalists buy ammo, preparing for what?

In ancient times, this was an act of God –

a scourge caused by our sinfulness,

we’d bow at altars and beg for forgiveness.

Today, we fear nothingness.

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My book review of ‘The Plague’ is published!

About a month ago, I posted a review of The Plague by Albert Camus. It’s now been published in Bewildering Stories, along with an accompanying review by Don Webb, the website’s managing editor.

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Holding on: Searching for hope during these dark times

I’m angry and I’m upset. The past few days I’ve sunk into a depression, mixed with bursts of anger. A lot of it has to do with self-isolation. Some of it has to do with bipolar symptoms. However, a lot of it has to do with what’s going on in America right now.

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Me and Pops

Like many people, I’ve been isolated since early March. I live with my grandfather and, when everything first started, we were annoying each other a lot. Lately, as we’ve settled into the routines and rhythms of isolation, I’ve begun to cherish this time we’re spending together.

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Is peace possible during the pandemic?

My emotions have been very much affected by the 24-hour news cycle during the pandemic. The news has been grim – in America, there are constant updates about record unemployment, nasty protests, and the various insults hurled by politicians at each other. Yesterday, I asked myself, is peace possible during all this turmoil?

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Death-rattle (a poem)

Death has come knocking,

quietly at first and now with a shout

that rattles the planet –

My instincts are conflicted: for so long,

I have craved oblivion, but now that it’s here

there’s a fear that plays with the chemicals

in my broken brain.

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