Today’s prompt is a twist on a prompt offered by Kay Gabriel during a meeting she facilitated at the Poetry Project last year. Today, I’d like to challenge you to write a two-part poem, in the form of an exchange of letters. The first stanza (or part) should be in the form of a letter that you write either to yourself or to a famous fictional or historical person. The second part should be the letter you receive in response. These can be as short or long as you like, in the form of prose poems, or with line breaks – and of course, the subject matter of the letters is totally up to you.
I thoroughly enjoyed this prompt and I must thank my girls for forcing me to watch the entire Avengers series in 2018 before the release of The Endgame.
Below is my letter written as a prose poem.
Dear Mr. Lee
I hope all is well at your end. I wish I could tell you that we, here on earth were fine too. But we’re not. And I can’t help but think it’s got something to do with you or maybe it’s something you could help us with. Let me get to the point before you lose your patience; I know you’re a busy man. The earth is under attack by aliens called Covid-19- the number being the year when they were discovered- exactly a year after you left us for your heavenly abode. Was that by any chance when you started writing again? Don’t get me wrong. It’s just something you said before- when you were here- “There’s never a time I’m not working. I don’t take vacations,” and I thought maybe…just maybe there’s been a glitch and your creation somehow, landed here on earth. Please do not be offended. I do not mean to blame you for what’s happening. I just think the mind is a powerful weapon and has the power to make whatever it believes come true. I’m sure you agree. The thing is the year 2020 was like The Snap – people died in large numbers- just like that- as if Thanos had snapped his finger.
The battle of the Avengers has become our reality. We no longer step out as we please. We go only when there is a dire need and we don our masks and use an alcohol disinfectant at all times. We are wary of strangers and view everybody around us as a potential enemy. We tried to control the spread of the enemy through strict measures such as a lockdown, social distancing and fines. But the enemy is unseen. However a year and three months later, we are right where where it all started except we now have a vaccine. However, the enemy has mutated and is now using our children to get to us. It multiplies in their bodies and uses them as transporters. If this goes on, the entire humankind shall be destroyed. I write to you to ask you for help. It is time for the Avengers to come together to save us from the virus or our species shall be finished.
Letter from Mr. Lee
It is good to hear from you. I am well here and am busy as you rightly thought. I feel great sorrow knowing that the earth is under attack. I wish you were right about a glitch even if it meant that I was to blame for I could then help you. It is with great regret that I must tell you that I have nothing to do with the current happenings at your end. However, you may want to contact the author, Michel Crichton, the author of the Jurassic Park. What you may not know is that he also wrote ‘The Andromeda Strain,’ and what you describe in your letter sounds very much like it.
I do not think you need the Avengers to save you. From all that you have written I believe each of you down there is a superhero- some more powerful than the others. Yet all are heroes for surviving in these times requires great courage, strength, resilience and most of all unity.
You will win this battle but to win you must do Whatever it takes.
P.S. ‘Whatever it takes’ is a quote from The Avengers, written by Stan Lee
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