Memento Mori

Then, of course, they had no real medical care,
no vaccines, nothing like that, and when locked down
no contact with anyone, no way of knowing
what in God’s name was going on. But then
they were familiar with death, they lived with it.
Death – and God – were all around them all the time.
People died, people of all ages,
every day. Death came as no surprise.

Now, of course, at home, the whole wide world
is at our finger tips, our friends and family
there at the flick of a finger, the touch of a button.
But we know a fear those others never knew:
the fear of the unfamiliar. No one then
expected to live for long. No one now
expects to die. Death is taboo. We live in
denial. Today what we denied is peering
through the window, is knocking at our doors
just as it peered in through their windows,
knocked at their doors, every day.