Suddenly, everything stopped.

Or so it seemed.

The jets were grounded,

Flights were cancelled,

People stayed at home and washed their hands.

But the blackbird still sang in the dawn,

Hawthorn buds still set green,

Worms still turned the earth.

Only Man’s world stopped moving.

Companies went bust.

Factories closed.

The sparrows kept on chattering and squabbling.

Wood anemones raised their heads to announce the arrival of Spring.

Coffee shops lay empty.

The taxis had no revellers to carry.

And fish returned to swim in the canals of Venice.

The children were sent home from school.

Examinations were cancelled.

The lioness taught her cubs to hunt on the Serengeti plains.

In African skies, the swallows fed themselves in preparation of migration.

Parents sat at home with their children

Unable to answer their questions.

Daffodils nodded their solar heads in the misted breeze.

The bishops closed the churches.

Clergy were lost…

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