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The Stories

A.C., 52, a writer/editor in Sydney, Australia

“…I spread wide my arms,
stretch heart skyward
breathe deeply under
overarching boughs
and open my eyes
to a small universe
of grey-brown spheres
gently swaying
midst the frenzied
each one so like a
tiny spiky
Death Star—
a perfect
wooden replica
of a COVID-19 cell…”

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R.H., 40, an academic in Sydney, Australia

“…in the second week of March, just before New Zealand shut their borders to non-citizens (which includes my husband, although he grew up in New Zealand), my father-in-law was diagnosed with cancer. We decided to wait and see what initial test results suggested in terms of prognosis, before booking flights to fly over. By then it was too late […] He died in mid April, before we could see him again…”

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S.T., 41, an echocardiographer in Waukesha, WI

“…Everyday at work we hear something new and new protocols are made. It’s necessary and hard to read everything to keep up with the changes. It is now the end of May. I don’t know if I see my field in healthcare ever being the same again…”

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Life in Quarantine: Witnessing Global Pandemic is an initiative sponsored by the Poetic Media Lab and the Center for Spatial and Textual Analysis at Stanford University.

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