Tag Archives: Val J. Chapman

If Covid Were a Person, What Would You Say To Them? Isolation, Val Chapman

If Covid were a person, what would you say to them?


Keep away! Keep away!

I’m not available today,

Or any day.


Can’t you see my mask?

It can protect me from people like you.

People like you are a like a virus,

Following me, kerb-crawling, encroaching.


You’re a killer, a murderer!

People like you make me ill.

I can’t even breathe because of you.


Yet you’re invisible, like a ghost,

Haunting me, taunting me, threatening me.

I could kill you!


And you could kill me,

But you won’t!

Val J Chapman

Val Chapman, Isolation




There is space, there is blankness, there is a complete lack of focus.

There is separation, there is loneliness, aloneness, and total isolation.

Diaries and calendars are devoid of appointments, arrangements.

Empty lines.


My house has never been so clean; my garden’s never been so green.

I walk each day for exercise, fresh air, and to keep me sane.

And writing, writing, writing; I need to do it.

No more empty lines.


I am hovering, like an eagle in the sky, looking,

Watching out for symptoms.

Waiting, hoping I may escape it, keeping safe

In my space.


Meanwhile, deserted cities, deserted towns.

All fallen silent, without sounds.

No socialising except by ‘phone; only myself for company.

Making us all feel totally alone.


And yet, when doors are closed, one learns to climb through windows.

Human nature, I suppose.

So there are still those who flout the rules.

But most of us are all still dazed by the closed doors.


Family and loved ones missed; no little faces kissed,

And promises of video calls. Hopeful.

Freedom’s just another word for ‘nothing left to lose’

But freedom’s not appreciated until it’s lost.

Freedom, one day.






April 2020                                                                                                         Val J Chapman

When the Sky Hits the Ground

When the Sky Hits the Ground

Somewhere between life and death
is a place where complete forgetfulness
lies waiting for the darkness to drop.
Frail and ever failing, falling
over invisible threads of time,
this cruel journey begins.

Gnarled fingers play their silent music,
worn out feet tap their unheard rhythm,
while the future makes its final decision.
Life’s quality now in question,
it’s a place where every suggestion
is met with a frightened frown.

And this is where I found the signpost,
turning left at reason
and right at common sense.
Everything is now a mystery.
I can’t recall my family history;
its face is unfamiliar now.

And while I wait for the sky to fall,
through conscious confusion to unconscious delusion,
today, at least, I’ve remembered to forget.

Published in Best of Manchester Poets Vol.III 2013 © Val J Chapman