Yes there is fear. Yes there is isolation.
Yes there is panic buying. Yes there is sickness.
Yes there is even death.
But, they say that in Wuhan after so many years of noise
You can hear the birds again.
They say that after just a few weeks of quiet
The sky is no longer thick with fumes
But blue and grey and clear.
They say that in the streets of Assisi
People are singing to each other
across the empty squares,
keeping their windows open
so that those who are alone
may hear the sounds of family around them….
Listen, behind the factory noises of your panic.
The birds are singing again. The sky is clearing,
Spring is coming, And we are always encompassed by Love.
Open the windows of your soul
And though you may not be able
to touch across the empty square,
–Fr. Richard Hendrick, OFM (a friar in Ireland), March 13, 2020
Peggy Handler, MFT, is a psychotherapist in San Francisco's Noe Valley