The Eye of the C19 Hurricane


The Eye of the C19 Hurricane


An essay by Roger Merchant.






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Public talk channels click off into silence. Easing into the storm, I settle down and feel this renewing calm well up inside me. I utter humble greetings to all who may read these words.

The forest out my back window stands still and quiet, wafted by a slight breeze. A needled pine branch waves its slow hello, like some sign of human recognition and gentle acknowledgment. I can nearly feel the wind sighing for all of us in these pines.

“How dare you speak of trees humanly,” the anthropomorphic critic in my head speaks as I step aside, letting that old crackler go.
Beyond a thousand years and a lifetime of hold-it-in-fearfulness, I too let the fear go and begin to reconnect with the clam winds and warming wet sky, here in the eye of the hurricane.

Around me, my wife, our families and communities, locally and globally, the C19 storm swirls through all people in the atmosphere with no regard for country, race, social class, wealth or poverty, age, political or religious affiliation, gender and sexuality, etc., etc., etc. We stand together in a time and place where all these distinct certainties are being shredded day-by-day, and are receding if not already gone.

Welcome to the new world, where there is no going back to the whims and blind norms and life sucking greed that delivered all of us to the end of 2019, the end of that long era of status quo, privilege and power. The invisible hand of novel change launched at the cusp of 2019-2020, is now upon us across our global commons, Hurricane C19.

Beyond all denials, indeed we must find this terrifying on one hand, yet absolutely liberating on the other, especially when you look deeper and consider that none of us are immune, that all of us are at risk, and indeed, all of us are bound together in facing and accepting this hurricane with our utmost best in mind, with hands held high together while staying at least six feet apart.

Fly’s are being cast, flicking all waters of the globe, looking to hook a cure that remains unclear, uncertain at this time. In the face of such absolute uncertainty, unhinged from safety, what can one do for hope among endless voices that simply talk about it?

At a loss for words I don’t know. I pause... I remain respectful of hope by keeping my distance and patiently following a few new rules, a new stand for me. I don’t know why, but I remain strangely unafraid, like some elder warrior standing his mountain ground, with you, and you, and with you, all in the calm eye of this hurricane.

That I know I am loved and that I too love, is no longer up for question. I take heart in this fact of my human existence, from this moment on and outwards in all directions. The fir boughs wave their gentle thanks towards me, and indeed I feel much gratitude for being with you and a part of the natural and human threads that weave the fabric of our lives together here at home on Earth... From the eye of the hurricane.



Merchant, Roger, “The Eye of the C19 Hurricane,” Heart of Maine Community Stories, accessed April 17, 2024,

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