Dear Woman in the Durango Whole Foods Who Cut the Line in Front of One of my Best Friends While She Was Trying to Buy Two Cartons of Eggs Then Made a Racist Comment to Her

I want you to know about my friend.  
She is one of my best friends. Our kids
are growing up in one another’s homes.  
Last year, we all went to New York City 
together, when that was still a thing. 
My friend just had knee replacement
surgery.  It’s been really tough, as you can 
imagine – having surgery in the time of Covid,
and to be afraid for your health when your body 
is compromised –  you know, not only 
having to worry about one thing, but instead,
two items.

So, my friend was standing in line yesterday 
with two cartons of eggs.  That’s it. 
Just like you.
Two items.  

The Monday news about her knee 
was not what she had hoped for.
She was having a hard day.  Her new 
knee, it hurts, so standing there was hard.
That’s when you said to her, I’m going to 
go in front of you because I only have 
two items.

It took her a moment, and when she found
her voice she said, Excuse me, I also only have
two items.

And that’s when you told her to go back to wherever she came from.

My friend is Korean.  Just last week, 
we all sat around a Friday night backyard
fire fantasizing about how wonderful it would be 
if she would take us, a group of women, back home 
to where she came from.  It would be the honor 
of my life to see the lands that gave first breath 
to one of the most beautiful people I have ever 
known, a woman who understands 
the intricacies of the culture, the magic of the temples, 
the delicacies, the mountains, the back roads, 
the vistas. That’s way more reasons to go than just 
two items.

Anyway, this morning, my friend in tears 
told me about you from her front porch.  
Can you imagine what this must feel like?  I can’t,
and I bet you can’t either.  But I bet you have felt 
shame, or sadness, or left out.  I imagine you know 
what it is like to be mistreated or bullied or harmed.  
Maybe you were lucky enough to dodge meanness,
but I doubt it. I want to imagine that there is somewhere 
inside of you where compassion lives, maybe the part 
of you that is a woman, or a mother, or simply 
a living, breathing human. Next time, 
Woman in the Durango Whole Foods 
Who Cut the Line in Front of One of my Best Friends While 
She Was Trying to Buy Two Cartons of Eggs Then Made 
a Racist Comment to Her as You Both Stood There With 
Two Items,

I hope you think about this letter. So many hearts 
are breaking. We all share this crisis and yet,
we are tearing each other apart.  And, I also hope this letter finds 

You Who Stood By And Said Nothing

because her tears were not from one, but from 
both of these actions…these
two items.

Day 45

Inside Outside

Stayin’ inside
more than we’ve ever been,
and I mean in ways more than these halls,
let’s get outside,
please can you tell me when
we’ll start making more windows than walls…

We are all in proximity,
in the vicinity,
inside these four walls that need painting.
Feels like infinity,
sometimes like divinity,
and all different kinds of relatin’.

We’re opened up in new ways,
we sit here inside our days,
reading and watching and waiting,
despair, death and data weigh,
the government makes delay,
while the president works for his ratings.

Despite everything we know,
we’re not sure where this will go,
our theories are all rearranging.
We’re up high and then we’re low,
the news is a gigolo,
sensation, seduction and baitin’.

I’ve shown you all my cards,
played endlessly in the yard,
we’re finding new ways of acquainting.
It’s lovely and then it’s hard,
I hope we won’t disregard
the new kinds of ways that we’re changing.

We’ve made it over a month! I haven’t written every day, but that’s okay. I think about what it would be like to go back to school right now, and I don’t think I would like it. I’m perfectly content doing art projects all day and not being away from home for at least eight hours. In the beginning I wanted nothing more than to be back in school and to see everyone. Now I’m enjoying my peace and my alone time. I’ve become a more creative person and I’ve thought a lot about who I am and what I want to do with my future. During school I never had any time to think about anything other than school and soccer. I got up and left before the sun rose, and I came home after it had set. My life was a constant schedule and I felt like I zoned out for a couple months. Everyday felt like a dream that kept repeating over and over and over. During quarantine, even though the days are similar, I still use my free time to do different activities all day. I think throughout the day and I’ve opened up parts of my brain that I had no idea existed. I would never choose for this to go on forever, but for the time being I’m good. 

My favorite team didn’t pick the player I wanted but they ended up getting someone much better so I was happy with the turnout. We went on another desert hike with my dad this time the hike was next to the river. We climbed on boulders and had a rock throwing contest. We ate really good food and I won the that game me and my mom play so she had to bake me a cake. My dog got dropped off at my moms house and I am spending time with her. She had been with my dad for so long that she took off after his car. I also went into town with my friend and we got free tacos and cokes. we ate them six feet apart then I went home. I have also still been playing online games with my friends.

Day 35

The first month has passed…

The sky struggles
to procure the sun,
so we keep our faith
in springtime

and turn our faces
toward the rain.
New things are holy
now: Los Angeles

sings like an aviary
and electric starlight
dwarfs the house
next door; we shave

our heads in observance
of a Saturday night
hot dog eating contest;
nighttime fantasies

leave their fragrance
on the morning stoop,
a mood in minor key;
we dream

of our daughters,
of a cartoon pestilence,
a river, a romance;
guitar music

fills the evening and
empties the calendar;
a bald eagle moves closer
than the neighbor;

the children
are driving cars
on the back roads;
lovers curl together

and move apart, and
curl together; we wait,
we learn, we listen,
we play; and when

the world closes,
the heart finds
a new way
to open.

We haven’t written in a while and I think that’s because we’ve adjusted to quarantine. I don’t feel the need to let my feelings out as often because they aren’t as emotional as they used to be. I’ve gotten my schoolwork completely under control which took a couple weeks, but now I feel much less stress and everything is easier. I taught myself organization and good study skills. Things feel normal. The only thing I feel I lost are my social skills. I know I can get them back but if I were to hang out with people, I think I would act different, I think everyone would act different. This is the longest I’ve ever been away from my friends since I was two. When I think about the worst part of quarantine I still think of my friends. But now thinking of them I don’t feel sad, I feel excited for the moment that we get to see each other. Why feel sorry about things you can’t control when you can look at the bright side and see the light at the end of the tunnel where we all get to hang out again and get back to our old life. Or maybe our new start.

This week we set up the trampoline and with the new net it looks so much better. Rob was also here all week and that was super fun. We ate a lot of food. Yesterday I made hotdogs on the grill. they were all a little burnt but they were still good. My dad also came down and we went to the soccer fields and we played in my backyard. It was good to see him because I haven’t for awhile. I also hung up a signed football poster. The amount of school work we have has definitely increased. The NFL draft is on Thursday and I hope my favorite team picks Henry Ruggs. This year the draft is being held virtually so it will be very different from all the other years.


Day 27

snippets, haiku days 22-27

in isolation,
a young artist emerges
into herself.  grace.

impromptu walk with
a friend, six feet apart, a
lingering goodbye.

a world in fresh white,
earth’s cold blanket, and beneath,
committed green blades.

in the desert, all
etched things eventually
turn to dust, to dune.

Rescued by garage
storage, I say a soft prayer
for Easter grass.

teenagers hunt for
malted milk eggs as the snow
falls.  I will miss this.

a week’s worth of milk,
apples, cheese – the best part, the
delivery man.

I haven’t written in a while because I’ve been doing a lot of other things, but I feel like I have important things to say. I mean not necessarily important, but I need to let my feelings out again. Time has been going very quickly. It’s already been around a month and it only feels like it’s been two weeks. School closed down a month ago today. I think time has passed so fast because I’ve been finding ways to keep myself busy. I got a lot of art supplies and more are on the way. I’ve been sewing masks and all of this really makes it feel easy. It makes it feel easy to stay inside and to be home all the time. I obviously still miss my friends a lot but if I pass the time quickly, all of this will end sooner. School feels simple but it also feels like a lot is being thrown at me at once all the time. I’m definitely ready for summer even if we are still supposed to be self isolating. I want school to be over. I’m really proud of myself for being creative and doing art. I’m proud that I’m not just sitting in my bed all day doing nothing. Rob got here today and it has been nice to have a new person here. We have had a great time with just the three of us, but a little change in energy is always nice. I think about what parts of the summer I will still have. Will this end during the summer or will it continue into next year? I didn’t have a bunch of plans for the summer, but I did have some and I really want to know which ones will still happen. I still feel sad but I’m continuing to do things that I enjoy and that’s making everything easier.

The week we did Easter and had a lot of fun. I wrote a monologue and we went hiking with my dad. I also played a bunch of games with my friends.  My mom and I went on a hike too. We got a new net for the trampoline but we were missing the caps that go on the top of the poles so we ordered new ones.

Day 21

The day was undoubtedly spring-like.  The doors and windows are open.  The grass is greening every day.  We played rounds of our new invented football game, “Big Chungus,” and we are looking forward to the new trampoline net which should be here by today so that the game can be played in full force.

I had this thought the other day about how I used to slack when my little brother wanted to play football when we were kids – mostly in my preteen/teen years – when I was kinda over it.  I am now certainly making up for those lost football hours.  We play almost every evening.

I went on a long walk solo, saw people driving, riding bikes with masks on.

Yesterday we got the grill going for the first time this season with burgers.  We ate outside.  The kids played until it was dark, and then they slept in the “tiny house” outside (playhouse).  We ran an electrical cord out so that they can watch their shows.  It was so cute to see the little windows glowing. At around 10:45pm, M ran in with a bloody nose from getting swatted by his sister (by accident) as they were adjusting for sleep.  Other than that, it was a huge success, and I hope there will be more of these adventures.

Keeping busy with work, kids started back up with school today,  almost finished “Where the Crawdads Sing,” which I will pass along to M,  we ordered new card game + books for M, new paints for M…onward we roll into April.

My new word….allow.

Day 21 was a good transition into restarting school. I did a lot of art and hung it around my room, then I went outside and played football with my brother. After, we slept in the tiny house. This was a lot of fun because we had time to just talk. We never have time to talk and we learned a lot about each other. This day was calming and getting along with my family makes quarantining with them better. I still talk to my friends every day so I’m realizing how similar it is to physically being around them. We still talk like we used to, the only difference is that it is through a screen. I cannot believe we are already on day 21. That seems so crazy to me. Time has been going a lot quicker than I thought it would. That is a huge plus side because that means school will finish quicker. I really hope this virus slows down during the summer and I can see my friends more. Everyone misses each other so much and that makes me excited for the moment we see each other. We have already made a lot of plans for what we are going to do at the end of this. We’re going to have a lot of group sleepovers and hangouts. We’re going to cherish our time together and be so much more grateful for it than we were before. I’m so glad that everyone has kept in contact with each other so well. This shows us how strong our friendships are and that we can literally get through anything. I got new art supplies and I have a show that I love so I feel like I’m finally settling down in my own home.

Today was our last day of break so my mom didn’t make us go on a hike. For breakfast I had bagels and lox and played games with my friends. We hung around the house and I played on my trampoline. After dinner I taught my sister how to do a backflip then we slept in the mini house we have in our backyard.

Days 15-20

E…Snippets, Haikus:

Quarantined lovers
stand six feet apart, windy
Delta parking lot.

Between us, the two
clipped daffodils you brought, one
is me, one is you.

Two hours to the red
rocks, desert flowers bloom white,
plum, yellow, crimson.

A Mars planet, no
one on the roads, our spirits
lift by the river.

Support comes from the
most unexpected places,
these little graces.

A couple degrees
of separation – in all
directions, closer.

How vulnerable
we all are now, and not just
in our bodies.

Sunday morning, the
first day I practiced yoga
with a woodpecker.

Healing comes in the
form of two dimensional
faces on a screen.

Armageddon.  What
is that, music? An ice cream
truck, an empty street.


Spring break – Six days 

Spring break was perfect timing for a relaxing break away from online school. I partly wish that they skipped spring break and just ended school early because that’s what Telluride did, but I know that this break was good for me. I don’t know if I’m ready to start school again but I feel like during this break I’ve gotten very organized. I now make my bed every day and I keep my room super clean. I think that I can dive back into school and really stay on top of it. I still really miss my friends. Like more than I ever thought I could. I really need that connection, but in some way I think we’ve made an even greater connection. We talk all the time and we have personal conversations that we don’t normally have. Anna was allowed to spend a couple nights at my house because she’s been in complete quarantine. That was really good for her and I know she needed it a lot and it felt good to be there for her and be able to physically hug her. My friends and I watch movies together and we facetime so I feel like our connection has gotten so strong. School has been easier and harder than I thought at the same time. Our assignments are easy, but it’s really hard to find the motivation to do them. I now realize that when my room is clean and my life is in order, I focus much better and my schoolwork becomes easier. We are going to start writing again every day and get back on our regular schedule. I’m very excited for school to end, but I know i’ll make it through happily and I’ll work very hard to keep my life in order. 

The weekend review-
Over the weekend we did many things like going on a hike in the desert. We also got to see my dad on Sunday.  He came down to Ridgway and we played football. We also got groceries from the market. This time we got most of the stuff that we ordered. Rob was going to come but he couldn’t and we were sad that he wasn’t able to make it. We start doing school from home again on Tuesday and I really don’t want to. It is interesting how doing everything from home kinda feels normal now.

Day 13, 14

We are sinking into a kind of strange normalcy.  Fortunately, work has been busy, and I am especially grateful to have a kind of solid foundation – both in a sense of productivity as well as a connection to my people.  This week I have felt the strain of trying to do the right thing for all of us.  It’s hard to know what that is sometimes.  I have found myself wishing for someone else to be the grownup.  But these moments pass, and I fall back on the trust.  There were some difficult moments … there is a pull to make the right choice for our safety vs. honoring all the desires.  I want to take care of my family in the best way, and that is hard with all of the unknowns.  It’s especially tricky as we are a two-household family and there are different feelings about the way things should go that are arising.  When it is just the kids and I in our little bubble, things feel pretty simple. We deal with the emotions that arise, our basic needs, we cook awesome meals and take it moment to moment.  As more people come into the conversation, the more complicated it gets.  And also, I know that it is so important to honor all of these relationships. I will say that as a result, I believe our communication is at an all-time high, and I just have to trust that we are all speaking our minds.  We are all very vulnerable with one another.  In areas where there used to be fight, there is listening.  I even noticed this today in an online Zoom Town Council meeting.  No one knows anything and everyone admits it. There is humility.  Everyone wants to do the right thing.  This part is beautiful.  My lover is coming on Sunday.  He will have been isolating for over two weeks by that time.  I’m so looking forward to seeing him.  I also felt protective of the envelope that the kids and I have sealed ourselves into, and there is guilt that I get to see my person and they don’t.  Their emotional well-being is everything, and I know that there is tenderness right now. But again – we found our way to the most honest conversations and I am so proud of all of us. Mostly, there is just a lot of love (even the parts that hurt are based on all the love) and despite the vast unknowns, there is a tremendous amount of trust.  We have all decided that we need to take this moment to moment, and this is the most soft and real place to be.

The last two days have gone up and down., I’ve been happy, then I overthink, then I feel sad. I feel like during this time, the happy things feel really happy but the sad things feel really sad. Luckily, I have had a lot of happy times. We have gone outside a lot and originally, I didn’t want to go outside at all, but now I’m so glad I get to go outside. Every day feels easier and more normal. Everyday I wonder how long this will go. I wonder what our lives will be like when this is done. Will we be able to socialize as well? Will we have all the same friends? This had never happened before to anyone in my life, so knowone can tell me what they think will happen and have it be the truth. No one actually knows how long this will go or how many people will die which is the disconcerting part. There’s no one that can tell me this will be okay because no one truly knows. I am both scared and excited for the future. It’s scary because everything could get much worse, but it’s exciting because the world will have healed itself and everything will change. Yesterday we stayed at home and today we went to Telluride. I feel like we’ve had the perfect amount of time staying inside and going outside. I would like to go to Telluride more so I can see my dad. It’s been a while since we stayed there and I miss it a lot, but I know we will eventually be back. My friends are basically always on the same page as me and that helps a lot cause I feel like we’re in this together.

Today I got a giant blanket sweatshirt called the Comfy. It is super warm and cozy. I was also out on the trampoline for a while. We had no schoolwork because it is spring break. My sister came outside with me and we played a game we made up using the football. We then went to bed.
We woke up and left for telluride because we were going to see my dad. when we got up there we went on a hike. I was super happy that we got to see him. My grandma also came with us and we both brought our dogs. When we were leaving I wanted to hug my dad but couldn’t because of the virus. He  has been working and has been around people and he was not isolated. After telluride we went home and played football. we are having pasta for dinner tonight then we will go to bed.

The Weekend (Days 11 & 12)

Old Things Healed, New Things Tried

On the hike, there is no hashing out
of how it used to be, there is just the river,
and the broken bridge rebuilt

downstream, only birds and the songs they make,
and the new green blades that push through
the detritus. Attention is the new ground

from which we will grow.  At home,
anything goes, the kids take risks
on blue cheese, banana pancakes, a new trick

on the trampoline.  We meet for virtual music
and linger, soft silences melodic, traded thoughts.
No point in filling the spaces with old stories,

time now to believe the black-capped
chickadee, the belt of Orion, to be a part
in a new kind of together.

This weekend was the beginning day of spring break. I went on a lot of walks with my friends and my family. Before this virus, I didn’t walk this much, I mean I had my sports, but I didn’t take the time to be outside in the fresh air on my own. I didn’t know how much I liked walking. Usually when I hang out with people we go sit inside. I’ve gotten to walk all over town which feels so weird because there is no one in town. It feels like a ghost town. We drove by the school and usually when I take that drive I have this feeling of really not wanting to go, but now when I drive by all I want to do is go back. This is probably good because now I will really appreciate going to school. I want to be back in class talking to people and I want to be sitting at the lunch table with my friends. I heard about how the coronavirus numbers are going down in China and I know we can’t legally make everyone stay inside, but I wish we could follow their path a little and get rid of this virus. Our numbers are going up so much and I don’t understand why people aren’t staying inside because they feel like they don’t have to worry. People need to realize that just because they can’t get sick, their loved ones can. They need to be careful. It’s so hard to stay inside but we will have to much longer if people don’t start being aware. I want to enjoy my spring break and I am supposed to be with my friends but now I can’t. But, I have to remember to be grateful that I can still walk around with my friends because some people can’t even leave their houses. I am so lucky but I really miss my people. I know that this will end, but it’s hard for me to not know how long it will go. 

On Saturday we woke up and my mom taught a class. We had a skillet for breakfast and I played games with my friends. After that we went on a hike with my dad and  it was fun to see him. On the hike we played football. I also threw the ball for my dog and found a stick to throw for her in the river. After that I did some tricks on the trampoline and we watched a movie called 1917. We then went to bed because we were tired.
Today we woke up and laid around the house in the morning. We didn’t do much today. after lunch we went on our daily hike and then came back. I played video games with my friends and went back out on the trampoline. I was sad because it was Sunday and on Monday we had to start doing our work from home again. Then I remembered it was spring break. My mom and I then watched a show and went to bed.

Day 10


Various shades of light and dark,
greyscale and sometimes a rainbow,
the colors come so close together,
then move apart, one moment
a shadow, the next, a spark.  All
the sailors navigate alone on
the same sea, even the ones who
ride in the same boat.  We wave
to one another, then put our heads
down to prepare for the next swell,
our shoulders lean into the squall.
Rise and fall,  peak and trough, we
are all in varying stages of the surge
at any given moment, sometimes in sync,
sometimes discordant, we all hold on.
And hold on we do, and bow deep to
the ones who have not, as this journey
is also for them, and in this sharing,
a softness, a different kind of sea.

Today was the same as most other days. I saw my friends then I watched American Horror Story. Even though these days all seem the same in terms of events, every day is different and special. I learn something new about who I am all the time and I unknowingly teach myself new ways to cope with this situation by the hour. I miss being with everyone and I know I say that a lot but I’ve never missed my people more. I miss all of it. I miss passing by them in the hallway briefly making eye contact. I miss all of the things that I used to take advantage of. If I was given one wish I wouldn’t ask for unlimited money or superpowers, I would simply wish for the chance to hug someone. All I want is the support and comfort of a hug. My favorite thing in life has always been social interaction and now that’s the one thing that’s been taken away from me. I know everyone is in this situation which actually helps in some way because all of their wishes would be to hug and to laugh within six feet of each other. Knowing that we all have that  common longing makes me excited for when we are done with this because they will be showing as much love to me as I would be showing to them. We will all be 100% more grateful for the things we have. Everyday I ask myself why this had to happen. Why did this have to happen during the year that’s supposed to be one of the most social and exciting years of my life? Why couldn’t this have happened when I was in elementary school and I loved staying home and playing with my dinosaur toys? I’ve heard many people say that this is the most difficult thing they’ve ever lived through. That sentence is both sprising and not surprising at the same time. How could this possibly be so difficult if all we have to do is stay inside? That’s what I would have thought before all of this, but now that I’m in it I can see how this will probably be the most difficult and darkest part of my life. The time of quarantine will be really hard, but after we might be the happiest we’ve ever been and all of that darkness will hopefully fade away. 

Today we woke up and had no school so I played games with my friends. We went on a short hike and had sushi for lunch. After that I jumped on the trampoline and then, we stayed up late talking to our friends and had roast beef and potatoes.

Day 9

A Day of Sun

A day of sun,
there will be snow tomorrow,
just like a Colorado springtime.

We pick sage along the trail,
my son tells running stories
the entire time,

I have nothing to do
but listen with my whole body
as mountain bluebirds

sing the backdrop.
When I talk to my lover later,
there are sweet staring pauses,

I watch his face on a screen,
so close but not
for touching.

The children make dinner together
they are soft with one another.
I dream of listening to the guitar

of my dead music hero,
while my friend runs her fingers
through my hair in the grass.

Day nine was very nice and relaxing. I watched American Horror Story for a lot of the day, then I cleaned out the baskets full of random stuff in my room. I hung out with E then at the end of the day, I cooked dinner with my mom and brother. It was a nice and calming day. I obviously miss my friends, but we have been going on walks every day and that really helps me stay connected to them. I know this virus isn’t going to go away soon so I know I need to stop hoping, but we can still be hopeful that everyone stays safe and we make it past this. I’m so excited for when this becomes a thing of the past and we’re all back to our normal lives. I know that a lot of people in the US are not taking this seriously and that’s why it’s spreading so fast. At first I was so mad that I had to stay away from my friends, but now I’m grateful that I’m in one of the families that made the right choice. I want everyone to stay inside and keep their distance from other people because if everyone in the world did that for around two weeks, we could get rid of the virus. On the bright side, I have had a lot of time to do art and to do things that I wouldn’t normally have time to do.

Today we woke up and did our schoolwork after that we went on a hike. I also played with my friends on xbox. When we got back my sister and I made dinner. We had a beef rice and cucumber bowl. I then played more games and after that we went to bed