The Year of Silent Healing

By Christine Lawrence

Exactly when did this happen?

We ask ourselves today

when we wake up to each morning,

the year has slipped away.

The good times passed us by

and still outside the birds they sing.

The sun comes out

and the butterflies are on the wing.

We love the peace that lockdown brings

no cars pollute the air,

the seas are clean around us

and we have time to sit and stare

at clouds that float majestically

against a bluer sky,

watch sparrows with their young

fledge from nests nearby.

We learn to know our neighbours

and call them by their names,

reaching out a helping hand

‘no touching’, but all the same,

we know they’re there behind the door

or at the garden gate

with a wave for us as we pass

and a cheery ‘Good evening mate.’

We’ve slipped into a way of life

that we’d often dreamed of before,

to slow down all the busyness;

do less instead of more.

At times, I know, we panic

and long for our old routine.

We miss, we say, our rush about

before Covid-nineteen.

But just take a breath and look around

at all that you’ve achieved;

the writings and the plantings,

the cleaning and the clearing out,

the space and time to grieve your loss,

the healing and the growing,

the letting go and welcoming in,

the grounding and the knowing.

We can’t embrace each other yet

and the journey’s not at an end

but we can embrace the journey

as we slowly start to mend.

Just hold on to precious moments

as you enter each new day.

Don’t lose all you’ve gained from this

in each and every way.


Inspiration: The poem was inspired by my looking back on what I’d been able to achieve this year that maybe I would have been too busy to do any other time. I had been listening to people bewailing how much they’d lost this year and yet all I could remember of the lockdown months was good, getting closer to nature again, having the time to enjoy being alive, not feeling guilty about saying ‘No I can’t do that, I have to stay at home.’ And seeing the world looking so clean and fresh without all the traffic and people’s litter.


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