Quarantine Blackout Poetry–Volume 5: A Father-Daughter Project

The Quarantine Blackout Poetry Project is a weekly project my 12 year old daughter and I work on together. It is my attempt to create “our thing.”

This week Haley and I present four new blackout poems–two by Haley and two by me.


A three-letter grunt that artfully expresses my household’s feelings towards quarantine. We’ve hit the point where we just grunt our feelings.

Like cave-people in quarantine.

This week wasn’t easy us– for both crafting blackout poetry and for living.

Maybe it’s was the weather. Maybe because there’s no baseball. No school. No birthday parties. Maybe it’s because our usual anticipation for summer has vanished like pinched fingers to a flame.


But we move ahead because we’re both blessed and cursed with human spirit.

We’re stubborn. Sore and slipping yet hanging on to hope. We pop hearty laughs and watch the sun stretch the afternoon sky and despite everything– we hear a strong, familiar voice cut through suburbia saying, “This too shall pass.”

Haley’s poem “Nobody’s Perfect”, attempts to capture her frustration with trying to achieve perfection yet learning the old adage, “No ones perfect.” “Nothing is Fair”is her simply coming to terms with another adage, “Life is not fair.”


My first poem, “Walking away from America” attempts to capture my frustration with the political response to quarantine. Nobody has the right answer yet everybody pretends they do. Those in charge of policy and peacemaking are staring deep into my television screen “talking out both sides of their mouth.”


My second poem, “Rebirth” is how everyday is an opportunity to start again. To fix your attitude, alter your perspective, and let go yesterday’s frustrations. And how yesterday’s wisdom is still relevant today: “This too shall pass.”

Be well,

Jay and Haley

Haley’s Poems:

“Nobody’s Perfect”

“Nothing is Fair”

My poems:

“Walking Away from America”


Previous Post:

Learning to Forgive: Building an Inner Citadel

By making forgiveness a daily practice we build an inner citadel–unreachable by the arrows and cannonballs and the Amazon delivery people of the outside world. Protected by forgiveness, we enter a safe place of restorative isolation. A place of quiet mercy.



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