This child dreaded masked man

who waited for Mardis Gras

to even score from yesteryear

on innocent unsuspecting prey.

Carnival of masquerades

hiding hurt and social scars

scaring the life out of you

playing Black Devil and sensay

cover up to get away

with murder and disorder

before penitence of Ash Wednesday

ceremony to launder sin

under black charred cover

of burnt leaves from Palm Sunday last

to usher in new lenten fast

and clear way to harbour

grudge until carnival next year.


I remember hearing a friend mutter

that she liked neither niqab nor burka.

Too much face cover

hiding details of Islamist terror

and male or female gender

as if looking at visage

made her a mind reader

of man and woman relations

and socio-political complications

in every age or culture.

Only observation sure –

religion provides cover.


Now I get a glimpse to see

mask creating anonymity

in COVID nineteen destiny.

Cannot see my friend or foe

cutting eye of grudge

or smiling suggestive sweet

eye sentiment at me

under corona mask eye burn

especially if you wear glasses

that cover with steam

spouting from your nose

boiling in your head

ready to infect another

if you refuse disguise

of plastic or cloth cover.


I cannot wait until next year

for carnival of freedom to breathe

in breathe out fresh air

and squarely greet every stranger

as we gratefully see each other

in an age post corona.



I take place of sensay bush doctor

carrying vaccine to almighty laundry in prayer.

I might even play Black Devil

to beat up on viruses and bacteria

and tell them all-Game over!

Even as we await the Omnipotent Healer.