Take the only Western industrialized uber-wealthy democracy to not have Universal Health Care. Toss in a global pandemic. Stir. Poet Daniel Olsson shows us why we must be mindful of this lack in our society, and that we must address it before it’s too late.

 
 

Nation of Sickness

  
 There was once a sickening
 at the site of the healthy undone…
 Sick were broke but not broken
 or bested by the givers of health bills…
 A mother takes the child to the clinic,
 The mother cares for sickness within,
 Only for a second can the care last
 as the nurse carries forward the check
 of monumental burden…
 Stay away from the doctor,
 Turn away from the medicine,
 Money won what should have
 always been undone by the intellectuals
 who govern the halls of our human rights…
 We were scared termites eating away
 at a house ready to fall down upon us,
 Believing the theft of true health was
 not sacred enough to be cared for,
 Warnings ignored by mothers of old to be
 true to the lungs,
 Be soft upon the heart,
 Carry love for the marrow in the bones…
 We calcified a cancer in our mind so
 few could climb the mountain of greed
 and ignore the dead bodies entrenched
 in the streets of their ascent...
 And for what the dying doctor spoke,
 The parents I serve have grown tired in the day,
 The children I love grow sickly in the night,
 My nation has fallen to its knees where the business
 venture stands tall…
 A country of experiments in wealth,
 And no conscious for health,
 So much freedom we were told,
 Unless freedom of body, mind and soul
 Never count in the view of our leaders… 

©Daniel Olsson – 2021

*****


Daniel Olsson is a poet from Bloomington, Indiana who has been writing poetry for the past eight years. Daniel’s writing revolves around contemporary society, including the topics of economic inequality, environmental justice, social issues and international relations. He can be found on Instagram and Tumblr as @apoeticcookie .

*****

For the first 100 days of the Biden administration, this website will feature a new poem of What’s Next!? These pieces can be calls to action, calls to attention, or calls to anger. They will light the way and guide the fight. They will get us moving and keep our momentum. They will be filled with hope, with anger, with sorrow. They will get us into good trouble and point out the trouble we need to stop. They will be polished gems, or rough-cut drafts of rage, or in-process pieces searching for peace. They may be haiku or tanka, limericks or lyrics, verses free or fettered.

#100Days100Poems of What’s Next!? wants your poems, your prose, your visual art (photos, drawings, sculptures), your music, your short films and animations. Interpret the theme as broadly as you’d like.

If you would like to submit to this endeavor, please send an email, with your visual art (as .jpg or .pdf) or your poem saved as a word document (.docx) to waxyandpoetic AT gmail DOT com. Include a short bio (2-3 sentences) and social media/website information. All rights remain with the author. Please address any formatting preferences in your email. Waxyandpoetic.com will post submissions time permitting, with at least one per day beginning 20 January 2021.

Read, follow, share, submit, live, love, spread light! Don’t forget to use #100Days100Poems !

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