Monday, December 7, 2020

A Room of My Own: Covid Heat Map and Four More Years Tanka

One Hundred Forty-Seventh Entry, Coronavirus Poetry Diary

the heat map 
turns from red to dark red
in Georgia's sunshine
the President pumps his fist
when the crowd chants, four more years

FYI: The New Yorker, Dec. 4: "Donald Trump, George Wallace, and the Influence of Losers"  by Steve Coll

Donald Trump will leave the White House in January, but Trumpism—that amorphous mobilization of nationalism, white nostalgia, and anti-élite grievance, twisted by disinformation—will likely remain a force in American politics for years.

Added: One Hundred Forty-Eighth Entry

autumn deepening
as new cases surge
a lone crow
caws into the dark
on the power line

Added: One Hundred Forty-Ninth Entry

surge upon surge ...
a phalanx of men with "grow up
mask up "sandwich boards


row upon row
of tattered Stars and Stripes
outside the prison wall --
another five inmates
waiting for their last meals

FYI: Associated Press, Dec. 7: Trump (the "most prolific execution president in over 130 years") ratchets up pace of executions before Biden inaugural.


  1. As Donald Trump’s presidency winds down, his administration is ratcheting up the pace of federal executions despite a surge of coronavirus cases in prisons, announcing plans for five starting Thursday and concluding just days before the Jan. 20 inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden.

    If the five go off as planned, it will make 13 executions since July when the Republican administration resumed putting inmates to death after a 17-year hiatus and will cement Trump's legacy as the most prolific execution president in over 130 years. He'll leave office having executed about a quarter of all federal death-row prisoners, despite waning support for capital punishment among both Democrats and Republicans...

    -- excerpted from Associated Press, Dec. 7: "Trump ratchets up pace of executions before Biden inaugural."

  2. "In Trump’s final days, a rush of federal executions, by Holly Honderich, BBC News, Dec. 11, accessed at

    The five executions began this week, starting with convicted killer 40-year-old Brandon Bernard who was put to death at a penitentiary in Terre Haute, Indiana. The execution of 56-year-old Alfred Bourgeois will take place on the evening of 11 December.