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A letter came yesterday

A letter came yesterday from the NHS;
Bad news I hoped, something fatal, a quick death
But it wasn’t, it was just a boring letter,
Summoning me to a covid centre.
About covid-19, why on earth should I care?
Why on earth would I want to live any longer?

Who do I think I am?  Who do they think I am?
Yet here I am, and here I stay, a stupid man.
So why does human man think he’s a Colossus?
Striding the noble earth like some Ignoramus.
D’you want to live forever, futile and useless?
Shuffling in slippers and consuming resources?

So, is life just an exercise in survival?
As long long long in fact more than ever ample.
Quantity trumps quality is what we’re told.
Who, was it, said, “Hope I die before I get old”.
Cat Stevens countered, “I am old but I’m happy”.
Neither is wrong, and neither denies the other.
I wonder about my response to that letter.

© RM Meyer
Winswell Water, February–March 2021