Pandemic bystanders

“The signs that children will bear the scars of the pandemic for years to come are unmistakable.” Henrietta Fore, UNICEF Executive Director

They have been silent bystanders of the pandemic

Watching their world upended, parents and grandparents getting sick

Not fully understanding what’s going on

Without articulating, they feel something is wrong

They have been banished from playing outside

Bewildered, they watch stressed adults, wide-eyed

The fear that pervades their home atmosphere

Leaches out to them, unspoken thoughts they do hear

Some are merely bored, glued to their screens

Others have faced horrors of abuse, unseen

Frustrations and fury of adults has at times culminated

In physical violence, its magnitude likely underestimated..

Food insecurity, isolation and lack of play

Are affecting millions of children today

Though the virus has largely spared them, other issues have proliferated

In this crisis the focus on our future generation has deteriorated..

**

I fervently hope children’s innate resilience would allow

Them to emerge from the pandemic unscathed somehow

Let’s hug our children a little tighter each day

Now and when COVID finally goes away..

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