We Walk on Egg Shells

The COVID-19 pandemic…is “the first global supply-chain crisis.”[citation omitted] This has led to losses in economic value, vast unemployment and underemployment, corporate collapse, increased exploitation, and widespread hunger and deprivation.

— “COVID-19 and Catastrophe Capitalism” , John Bellamy Foster and Intan Suwandi, Monthly Review, June 2020, vol. 72, no. 2

We walk on eggshells,
thinking we can save ourselves,
or ought to try.

The shells are so delicate:
robin eggs, thinned by pesticides,
practically translucent.

When the shells crack,
you won’t even hear it,
before you fall into the abyss.

The sound of wars unabated
comes from the East,
the South.

Feet pound the dry earth:
the evicted, expelled, driven off,
in drought, pandemic, famine.

We think of a time to come,
of empty shelves in the market,
when for us it really falls apart.

The helmeted face of chaos is already here.
In defiance, we borrow courage,
clasp hands, link arms.

When the shells break,
we will fall and fall, but at least
we will be together.

Roger Stoll lives in the San Francisco Bay Area and has published articles, book reviews and political poetry in Black Agenda Report, Counterpunch, Dissident Voice, Internationalist 360, Jewschool, Marxism-Leninism Today, MintPress News, MRonline, New Verse News, Orinoco Tribune, Popular Resistance, Resumen Latinoamericano, San Francisco Examiner, and ZNet. Read other articles by Roger.