Ruby’s Poem of COVID-couplets

by Eric G. Stark, published in the Lititz Record Express on 10/22/2020

Ruby Miller doesn’t understand why people
would call the media to promote her or say
she’s special.

“I don’t know why I would be unique, other
then I think people are surprised an 86-year-old
would be the one that starts a walking group in
the morning, started a water aerobic group in
the summer and teaches it,” said Miller, who
lives in Traditions America, an over-55 community
in Lititz. She also does line dancing
twice a week and plays the piano. “I don’t see
myself as unique. I think I fit into the community
pretty well, but I am probably one of the
older members.”

Miller, a former registered nurse and later
school guidance counselor in the Manheim
Central School District, also likes to write and
created a COVID-19 poem (more on this later).
It just goes to show you are only as old as you
feel, right?

“Maybe some people think that,” she said.
“Personally, I expect to act this way. I expect to
feel good and be active and keep going. I think
it is a matter of your own expectation of what
you can do.”

Miller, the mother of four children who graduated
from Manheim Central, is also a member
of the social committee at Traditions America.
She came up with the idea of an Amateur Hour,
an activity they could do outside.

For her “talent,” she wrote a poem about COVID-19 using
the ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas’ by Clement C. Moore as
her theme. Taking about an hour, she wrote it on the back of an
envelope while her husband, Bill, was driving to Massachusetts.
She makes local references to the “Friday Group,” which
meets for happy hour at Traditions’ Club House and the “Sewwhat
Group,” a sewing group in her community. At amateur
hour on Sept. 23, she recited the poem by memory.
“I tried to think of something that would be a current interest,”
Ruby Miller said, “and would be on the lighter side, during these
serious times.”

Here is the poem entitled “COVID.”

‘Twas the night before COVID and all thru the town,
Not a creature was stirring. There was rarely a frown.
The Friday group gathered in the clubhouse with care,
In hopes that their cocktails soon would be there.
With Pa in his workshop and I in my chair
We were just settled down from our winter despair.
When on the TV there arose such a clatter
I sprang to the screen to see what was the matter!
Away through the front door, I flew like a flash,
And grabbed the newspaper in one quick, mad dash.
The front page was covered with one giant ball
Over its surface were spikes overall.
Big letters said Covid- A virus is here.
It’s virulent, deadly! – A pandemic is near!!
China first got it and said not a word.
Now America has it- it flies like a bird!
It’s not like the other diseases we know
There isn’t a cure or a vaccine to slow…
This invisible bug- too tiny to see
It can stop a whole nation?? Now how could that be?!
But business shut down – employees let go
And the schools were all shuttered while teachers said “NO”!
No groups were allowed, no travel, no tours,
No cruises, no shows, they all closed their doors.
The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow
Left a feeling of gloom. There was NO place to go!
Then what to my wandering eyes should appear
But the president saying – “There’s no need to fear.”
We’ll do testing and tracking and work on a cure
Ask Dr. Birx she seems very sure.
Then Governor Wolf got into the fray
And several new rules were enacted that day.
Meet Dr. Levine. Prevention’s her task.
Yes, we’ll all wash our hands and we’ll all wear a mask.
My mask is for you and your mask is for me.
And everyone wears one. That’s how it must be!
More rapid than eagles the sew machines raced
And we all paid attention and covered our face.
“Sew-What Group” made masks and gave thousands away
While we all stayed at home and awaited the day…
When movies and cruises and restaurants returned
And quarantine ended- By now we had learned…
There were millions of cases, with thousands deceased
Nursing homes struggled. Hospitals felt squeezed.
Many thousands lost jobs as time went on
And social life ended except for the phone.
Toilet paper was real hard to find.
There were numerous times I got caught in a bind.
Now 6 months later we’ve still got the bug
Not much has changed. And we still need a hug!
So we turned to a driver to deliver a fix
Amazon, Wayfair, the mailman, Fed Ex.
With hurricane speed the packages came
And dropped at our doors with the company’s name.
Now Peapod, Blue Apron, Grubhub, Hello Fresh,
Instacart, Doordash, Little Green Chef,
They all did their job. They did fill a nook
But we had to stay home so all learned to cook!
So top of the porch to the top of the wall,
You may dash away, dash away, dash away all!
We know we’ll get thru this- we all will survive
And in the end we’ll be glad we’re alive.
But I can’t wait for the breaking news
Covid is cured now watch out for the flu!

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