Turning 80 During the Pandemic

Reaching four score in the pandemic
is certainly an achievement.
But once self-congratulations are over,
I ask myself: what lies ahead?

What should I do when the pandemic ends?
Should I go paragliding or climb Everest,
visit Machu Picchu or the Galapagos Islands,
or traverse the Silk Road?

No. My ambitions are modest:
spending real time with loved ones
and seeing more of my country, India–
joys, denied to me by the pandemic.

The past is gone – I cannot get it back.
The pandemic is stealing my todays
and many of my tomorrows.
So many days irretrievably lost.

Like the English rioters
protesting the Gregorian calendar,
I loudly voice my need
to get back my stolen days.

It won’t happen, I know
but it helps to pass the time,
and fill the empty spaces between tasks
as I await the end of my incarceration.

J. Krishnamurty is an economist and an economic historian who lives in Geneva.

Featured image: Valentin Balan/Unsplash