Dhananjay Kumar Singh lives in India and shares what his life has been like there during COVID. He also includes two poems about COVID and being in lockdown.
Having the tag “from the lab of Wuhan, China,” the deadly coronavirus has wreaked havoc worldwide and did not let any nation live in peace. It may be Italy, France, Britain, or any other nation, all have suffered considerably. Initially, during the first wave, even the developed countries also bowed down before it. And, after much striving, the situation improved a little bit.
In India, the first wave has seen a high recovery rate, the population at large felt at ease and began unfollowing the COVID-19 protocols—like wearing no masks and maintaining no social distances—and the results were unexpected. But now, Indians have seen the second wave, and it has been very devastating.
I vividly remember the day when the news of the first COVID-19 patient flashed in media. Like previous times, we were confident that this virus would not strike Indian soil. And the first wave passed off calmly, except for a few cases. But our presumptions failed when the positive cases increased multifold during the second wave. Positive cases and death figures were beyond the comprehension of the masses. Seeing the figure rising, the Indian government also imposed a lockdown and deployed heavy reinforcements.
During the curb, strict travel restrictions were placed by the government; the movement to any place needed a pass. The government set a time limit for the shops selling essential goods. I locked myself at home. In the beginning, I had a good time at home, but later I experienced boredom. I had nothing to do and staying locked in all the time at home was painful.
Soon, the government again extended the lockdown period. The news was like a severe blow to our patience.
I vividly remember the day when the news of the first COVID-19 patient flashed in media. Like previous times, we were confident that this virus would not strike Indian soil.
Here, in our locality, the cases were on the rise. Every day, pieces of new news I got to hear was painful and scary. Early news of the positive cases, I heard about people who were farther away from me. But one day, my neighbor who stays on the top floor of our building turned positive and that news was shattering. Gradually, his health began deteriorating. When he felt problems in breathing, he rushed to the hospital; but, in the city, all the hospitals refused to admit him as there was no bed, all were full. The whole day, with an oxygen cylinder, he spent knocking on the doors of hospitals throughout the city. Anyhow, in the evening, after repeated requests, one hospital gave him admittance.
In the meantime, another neighbor who lived opposite our building complained of fever and neckache, his family members rushed him to the hospital. Seeing his condition deteriorating, the doctor present there referred him to a higher center. On the way to the higher center, he died of cardiac arrest. That news shook me badly.
My neighbor who, after much suffering, got the bed, his health gradually improved. His recovery took almost more than a month. Another one, also a COVID patient, after getting discharged from the hospital, after full recovery, died of heart failure, leaving behind his wife and two kids. Not only that, two doctors of my locality in their fifties who had been serving us also died of COVID.
After a gap of one or two days, I still get the news of someone taking his or her last breath or being seriously ill. Countless such stories are there that take pages to write. Undoubtedly, the second wave will result in many orphans and widows. Their pain will always be felt, for years.
May 14, 2021
COVID is a fall
And seems God’s call
It cuts breath
And makes people forever asleep
Countless gets infected
Many more affected
Medical care getting exhausted
What to do? Where to go?
Are the questions being subjected
Life has become hell
And is a sign of God’s bell
The king is helpless
And the mob lies restless.
Oxygen is taking its last breath
Lying ahead is only God’s wreath
Remdesivir has gone from shelf
And now no one comes to help
The crematorium is full
There the scene is very awful
Life spent waiting in a queue
After death also nothing new
Now God is the hope
With His help only the man can cope.
Life can only be saved
If God comes to prevent this deadly wave.
May 18, 2021
Lockdown has been imposed
Schools, pubs, restaurants, cafes the government has closed
Now people staying at home
Like a silent tomb.
Fingers running on keyboard
Seems playing the musical chord
That’s also not giving any respite
And brings dreams of fear the whole night.
Not a single on road
Just to cut the COVID load
At homes, doors are closed
Like passengers on board.
Druggists, chemists selling their wares
To take people’s care
Grocery sales are not slow
Making money like a strong blow.
Classes are going online
Books are kept behind
Games in classes being played on the background screen
God knows the future of the cream.
Some jobs are going online
That’s really a good sign
But many lost their job
And now their life is like a swinging bob.
Anxiety, depression surrounding us
Everywhere going the same fuss
Mind says to go out
Just let the seeds of enjoyment sprout.
God knows what lies next
I pray the lord please bring the best.