On the cusp of the pandemic

in the grocery store tonight
the persnickety cashier
smiled at me as though I were
a so-loved friend she knew
she would not see again

the sun was going down
the sky was pink and full of wind
O world I want to take you
in my arms: the trees the colors
the seas full of pufferfish

every warm and frightened
animal body that relies on the
rhythm two lungs make to go on
being what it is