The Power of Silence

Imelda Hughes

Her cough worsened, in silence Francesca waited

in the alpine foothills, as she lay gasping in her bed,

alone and frightened, she fought the deadly enemy,

but the ambulance, on arrival, found her dead.


Bergamo became the epicentre of the epidemic

which swept over Lombardy’s rich plain,

leaving families shedding tears and grieving

for loved ones they would never see again,


the Nonne and Nonni taken without mercy,

Italy’s revered citizens carried away at night,

as morgues and cemeteries were overwhelmed,

coffin-laden vehicles became a common sight,


casting a grim shadow, instilling fear in cities

throughout the world, that didn’t know

when Italy’s tragedy would become theirs,

as the virus rampaged, unstoppable, out of control,


spreading like wildfire from one human to another,

in weeks bringing the world to its knees,

premises shuttered, people locked within their homes –

in a hectic world hushed, silence reigns supreme,


a silence where we have learned to enjoy

the simple things in life that come for free,

have realised our lives can be fulfilled with less,

that wealth does not happiness guarantee,


a silence that lets us look into our hearts

and question how our lives may for the better change,

if we ensure that togetherness and kindness will outlive

Covid 19, then the dying will not have been in vain.



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