Easter and Spring 2020 by Mary Lou Meyers

My Douglass classmate, Mary Lou Meyers, sent this poem. Since April is National Poetry month, and we are all inside together, I think her thoughts might ring some bells. It is also Spring, which is getting lost in the anxiety over the virus, so I am posting some pictures I took the other day when my husband and I took a walk together, in between the stanzas. Since Mary Lou talks about nearby Longwood Gardens, I included one photo from their website. Thanx, Mary Lou!
Easter and Spring 2020

Trees are still blooming!
There’s a pall hanging over the sky bright opening
as we forge ahead this Easter Saturday in the Year of our Lord 2020.
Heaven and Earth no longer in tune with the fullness of Spring.
   Lonely Daffodil
Along with the  surge of daffodils comes a dirge,
all is not what it seems.
The fraternity of trees no longer awakened by the light breeze,
the fragrance we smell is not overpowering enough to set us free.
Yet we embark on a journey through the Watershed, we four,
my daughter and two friends, Cloey and Laura,
not rebuffed by the dismal statistics,
erasing the rest of April.
Will May follow suit,
but June be the breakthrough?
What is so rare as a day in June?
Socially Distanced Flowers
My eyes have grown weary of staring at 4 walls,
my legs aching for the recall of distant places,
resuming my pace.
But today we celebrate walking with familiarity,
keeping our social distance with a dog,
who has innate resistance.
So much has happened since I was last here,
the fierce wind swept trees along the shore
which means we have to find another way
to grasp the reality of the up and down day.
               Blue Skies
We’re all in it together but apart,
save for the spark conversation brings,
ringing like the chorus of a song,
all trying to stay ahead of the unseen virus,
the dread that continues to spread,
especially in the teaming cities.
      Snowy White Blossoms

Chloe gives my daughter a Peace Rose,

we think where it will grow best for new beginnings.

Like the one developed by Meilland before WWII

which made its debut in New York City after the war;

a tent city now with every available space taken

over for refugees from the disease

with Heart Island as the burial place.
      Tulips, one at a time
It is a kind of war we fight but
soundless and speechless,
It creeps over the landscape,
but the only arms and ammunition
are masks and gloves
with disinfecting sprays and purifying rights.
We have suspended other beginnings and endings,
birth rights and even the send-off ones
in a fight to overcome the unsent enemy
Topiary at Longwood Gardens

for corona virus has managed to consume

the bloom on the cheeks of children,

who must play away from other children and school;

while for the elderly and those comprised by life,

it only offers breathing mechanisms and a fight to survive.


The only hugs we give at trail’s end are “air” hugs,
blown like the seeds of next year’s plants and flowers
where these three gardeners can celebrate
Longwood Gardens opening to the public again
without the dread of corona virus.

Finally, Someone Posts Nutrients to Combat Coronavirus!

For the last couple of weeks, I have been reading all the lists of what to do to protect yourself from the Coronavirus. Most of the recommendations are common sense. such as covering your mouth when you sneeze. In fact, many of the suggestions are the same ones to follow to avoid getting the flu. Finally, Dr. Mercola’s website:


This website has a long article with references about specific nutrients to help you combat this virulent virus. Here is just a small part of the article: a list of supplements to add to your whole foods diet. On the website is another chart with dosages:

(Direct Quote)

McCarty and DiNicolantonio list several nutrients available in supplement form that may be of particular benefit against COVID-19, including the following (below). For more details about each, see the full-text paper28 published in Progress in Cardiovascular Diseases:

N-acetylcysteine (NAC) Encourages glutathione production, thins mucus, lowers your chances of influenza infection and reduces your risk of developing severe bronchitis
Elderberry extract — Known to shorten influenza duration by two to four days and reduce the severity of the flu. According to the authors:29

“Given that elderberry is a very rich source of anthocyanins, there is reason to suspect that its impact on viruses might be mediated, at least in part, by ferulic acid, a prominent metabolite that appears in plasma following anthocyanin ingestion.”

Spirulina Reduces severity of influenza infection and lowers influenza mortality in animal studies. In a human trial, spirulina significantly lowered the viral load in patients with HIV infection
Beta-glucan — Reduces severity of influenza infection severity and lowers influenza mortality in animal studies
Glucosamine Upregulates mitochondrial antiviral-signaling protein (MAVS), reduces severity of influenza infection severity and lowers influenza mortality in animal studies
Selenium “Since selenium is an essential cofactor for certain peroxidases, and selenium deficiency has been endemic in certain regions of China and other parts of the world, insuring adequacy of selenium nutrition might also be appropriate in this context,” McCarty and DiNicolantonio note, adding:30

“Selenium deficiency also increases the rate at which viruses can mutate, promoting the evolution of strains that are more pathogenic and capable of evading immune surveillance.”

Zinc Supports “effective function and proliferation of various immune cells,” lowering mortality in the elderly by 27%
Lipoic acid — Helps boost type 1 interferon response. As explained in a 2014 paper:31

“Type I interferons (IFNs) activate intracellular antimicrobial programs and influence the development of innate and adaptive immune responses … (IFNs) are polypeptides that are secreted by infected cells and have three major functions.

First, they induce cell-intrinsic antimicrobial states in infected and neighboring cells that limit the spread of infectious agents, particularly viral pathogens. Second, they modulate innate immune responses in a balanced manner that promotes antigen presentation and natural killer cell functions while restraining pro-inflammatory pathways and cytokine production.

Third, they activate the adaptive immune system, thus promoting the development of high-affinity antigen-specific T and B cell responses and immunological memory. Type I IFNs are protective in acute viral infections but can have either protective or deleterious roles in bacterial infections and autoimmune diseases.”

Sulforaphane Helps boost type 1 interferon response

A 2005 study32 in The Journal of Infectious Diseases also found resveratrol has the power to inhibit the replication of influenza A virus, significantly improving survival in influenza-infected mice. According to the authors, resveratrol “acts by inhibiting a cellular, rather than a viral, function,” which suggests it “could be a particularly valuable anti-influenza drug.”


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