High Risk

His fingers wrap around the device,

sliding across the smooth plastic.

The rigid silicone buttons shift anxiously in their pegs.

The calluses on his thumb, hovering

over the power button.

After a moment of pause, indecision,


he stamps his warm finger down on the soft switch,

leaving an imprint on his skin.

Light blinds him from across the room.

His eyes shift away from the light

as time tops the hour.

Suddenly, a crescendo of noise erupts

from the speakers.

His fingers fumble anxiously over the volume keys.

A deep tenor rumbles over the music,

announcing the likelihood of destruction,

and disruption.

But above all, the risk of death

for the immunocompromised

can not be stressed enough.

The alarming words echo in his mind

over and over and over again.

With sweaty palms,

he darts his eyes around the room.

His gaze lands on his wife,

and tears gather,

because he knows his highest risk

is becoming a widower.

Abbey Marquess

Abbey Marquess is currently a senior at Lindenwood University. She is majoring in Finance with an emphasis in personal financial planning. During quarantine she has enjoyed writing short poems and stories, worrying about meaningless things and plotting to take over the world with her cat, Oreo. 

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