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Tuesday, April 13, 2021


by Sharon Olson

“Ecstasy of St. Teresa” by Gian Lorenzo Bernini.

As Bernini would have it, Teresa entered a quasi-orgasmic
state, calling out to her would-be husband Jesus! and explaining
later how the prick of the arrow exulted and burned at the same

and I think of my Mr. Moderna, the jolt he gives me, the fever,
the chills, the battle royale he is willing to undergo on my behalf, 
even though he is not entirely faithful, as I hear others claiming 

think of the lily and its deep chamber penetrated by the sharp
bill of its hummingbird swordsman, we do not hear her cry out 
or think he has forsaken her by darting into the orifices
of all the neighbor lilies

and yet in this year of multiple piercings, the throngs of the would-
be vaccinated circling in the vestibules, the ante-chambers
of their chosen clinics, the buzzing and murmuring will be
echoed even

by the hosanna of the seventeen-year emerging cicada swarm,
Brood X they are called, like the crucifix but here only a reference
to the number 10, the power of their song jacked up to the nth
degree, what has got into them, what probe, what stick?

Sharon Olson is a retired librarian who has recently moved to Annapolis, Maryland. Her book The Long Night of Flying was published by Sixteen Rivers Press in 2006. Her second book Will There Be Music? was published by Cherry Grove Collections in 2019. She will be getting her second dose of Moderna today.