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End of Term – 2020

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Earlier this week, I wrote a short poem reflecting on COVID-19 but through the metaphor of the ‘end of term’ feeling and anticipation of a long vacation. Subsequently, an early end of term has been announced by the Government which had a dull inevitability and detracts from the edge of this piece. Perhaps start with the reminder that this was not envisioned as anything to do with school:

End of Term – 2020

It feels like the end of term.
Long days stretch ahead,
A change from the harried pattern
Of weeks gone by.

Now is the time when we discover
The mettle of our lessons:
Does our maths add up;
Does our science make sense;
Does literature lend us the words we need?

It feels like the end of term.
Admittedly, the days ahead might be lonely.
Familiar routines broken like china.
No gaggle of mates to giggle with.
Even masters’ dictats fondly remembered
From a safe distance.

Everyone is affected.
In the town, shoppers are infected with a contagious glee.
Even the mundane, weekly shop becomes less ordinary.
Many a head is filled with dreams and longings
Of places yet far off.

It feels like the end of term,
A breath of sadness:
Not all will come back again.