Tongva Land, Los Angeles, USA
In my line of organizing work
I’m usually down to mask up
Cause it means shit’s about to go
Down at a public protest
And I’m not trying to get doxxed.
But this masking up everyday
Just to go outside?
Just to see people?
I hate it.
It’s hot, stuffy
And becomes a struggle -
Harder to breathe
Harder to talk
Harder to just be
Cause I can’t think without this pandemic
Hanging over my head.
An omnipresent catastrophe
Even though my life looks and feels mostly fine
Is a cognitive dissonance
That’s hard to process
But again I’m mostly fine
Except when I wear the mask
Cause then a mental harangue of
<Alert! Stay at home! Alert! Flatten the curve!>
<WE ARE ALL IN TERRIBLE DANGER>
And I forget what I’m doing cause
This mask is suffocating
Like this omnipresent catastrophe.
I go by TiDo or 杜雪玲. I use she/her pronouns. I cry over spilt compost. I smile with doggos, hikes, books, and gardens. I don’t just laugh at flatulent humor; I greet my parents with it. And I teach and organize.