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Getting Out Is The Hardest Part

My house is my fortress

It keeps the world out, and keeps me in.

A cave in which to hibernate

A satellite hovering far enough away.

A heavy shell to protect me

For day after day

Insulated from the cold

And the overwhelming city noise

And the diseases.

Life is difficult

And in Spaceship Jen I can forget that.

I see the world from afar

For as long as I stay there,

Even as the dishes and the laundry pile sky high

Even if I don’t see another human being for weeks.

But how do I leave that place

That protects me from harm

Without someone else to coax me out?

We’ve been told to stay indoors

For our own safety for months

And now we must step out.

To leave the house off my own steam,

Not just a scuttle to the shops for snacks?

Now that takes planning


Headphones with loud music to block out the noise.

Mask to block out other people’s air.

Antibacterial gel for my hands.

Purse to buy things.

Keys to let me back in when I’m done.

The minute I step out the gate,

I’ll be bombarded by the

Crowds, the cars, the buses,

The music won’t be loud enough to block it out


But at least I can focus on something

That’s not my discomfort or my overanxious brain.

I know I need to go outside.

The world is turning again,

People are emerging from their own spaceships

Into a new world

Make contact while it’s still safe.

I need to go outside so I stay sane.

So, I reach for the door handle and make those bold steps.

Originally published in the Calm of The Storm Issue of Sapphic Writer's Zine. I can't find a PDF and all links to the zine are gone. It's a shame, bc it was a lovely read.

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