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Talia H. Swartz


the air is tense and unsafe
shimmering veils obscure emotion
fears and hopes digitized misunderstood

warm tears stream for him
both vying for indefinite options
his lungs are weaker

she pleads for him
he cannot plead
he cannot breathe

but not seen through plexiglass walls
and faceshields and masks
is guilt

guilt that she was on the other side
that she brought this home
that he is here because of her

guilt cannot escape because it is protected
inside the confines of this room
for no one else to perceive

and in these walls of protection
that there is nothing to protect her
from this immutable guilt


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