by Kayla Macnowski, 05/11/2020, Traverse City, MI

Middle School 6-8 Category

Fear is locked in the eyes of every living breathing soul. Their lungs sting and scream for help. We hold ourselves prisoners while our neighbors’ breathing is getting heavier. The air grows thin as worry blows it away. Panic blows the sand of the beach into the air. The wind picks up over one million cases and circles faster. Yes, the coronavirus sends the breeze spinning faster than before. Faster. Faster. The wind rushes to me circling around me, blowing my hair in the air. Everything suddenly stops.

My glossy eyes stare into the water as the waves wash away what once was there. A beach that was once so full of life, buzzing with energy- gone. Color drains from our world leaving it pale and lifeless. The grains of sand lining the beaches, the fresh green grass, and the fun colorful shops of downtown, all return to black and white as I watch as the last drop of color drip off the Earth. Empty.

If only I could go back to when people didn’t cross the street when they saw me walking towards them.

If only I could go back to where masks weren’t tied over everyone’s face.

If only I could go back to when, “Sorry, We’re Closed,” wasn’t the only thing you saw dangling in the window of all the shops.

If only I could go back to when people didn’t let fear control them as they swipe the last roll of toilet paper off the shelf.

If only I could go back to when I could give my friends a hug, wrapping my arms around them, and feeling that warm comfortable feeling.

If only I could go back to the pictures I look at every day, where I was close to everyone I loved, and I was happy.

If only I could go back to before the coronavirus even started, when people weren’t dying.

If only I could go back.

If only.