Meltdown in Aisle Three

Barbara Edler

In Aisle Three
At Hy-Vee
I have a meltdown
Shelves literally wiped clean
No juice, no milk, no sardines
There’s barely any meat
Except where the butchers work
I ask about an advertised sale on New York strips
I thought they had
They do, they’re just not marked
I ask for four
The butcher looks relieved
Which makes sense later when
I discover from a friend someone had just come in and ordered
200 pounds of hamburger
I’m here for just a few items
And now I freeze
In Aisle Three
Tears forming the question,
What’s yet to come?
My youngest son
was just married last week
Which never would have happened
This week
Knowing he works stocking stores
I fear he may get it
The thought of losing
One more child
Has me falling down
Gripping an empty shelf
So many plans are now on hold
The uncertainty of the future overwhelms me
As I pray for miracles
Amongst the cans of corn and beans


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Bridge the Distance: An Oral History of COVID-19 in Poems Copyright © 2021 by Barbara Edler is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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