Sweat at the club
against all the other
unvaccinated or semi-vaccinated youths,
but don’t go to France
unless you have ten days to spare afterwards,
because the Beta variant
that makes up three percent of cases
will get you
(including those islands
in the middle of the Indian Ocean
that we’d never even heard of
until last week).
Maybe we’d never even heard of them
because they’re not as troubled as Madagascar-
maybe they have roads
but no lemurs to film.
Maybe they’re not as rich as the Seychelles
or the Maldives
the island paradise(s)
full of tiki huts
and smiling locals
grateful for your money
oh, so grateful-
as they pile the debris
of your single-use plastic
water bottles and sun cream
onto an island in the middle of the sea
out of sight, out of mind.
No, the Beta variant is dangerous,
oh, so dangerous,
with no hint of irony
that we gifted the world Alpha
then unleashed it on Europe
harbingers of doom
from our rocky little isle.
Maybe nobody looked at those figures-
Reunion Island is an insignificant speck, after all.
A speck that nobody checked.
Are we still supposed to believe
that any one of them knows
or has ever known
what they were doing?
Doesn’t it all feel like politics to you?
Point-scoring like Eurovision,
dick-swinging like Brexit
with a touch of European Championship machismo:
“No, YOU’RE higher risk”
UK-vaccinated passengers avoid quarantine.
Yes, you heard that right, UK-vaccinated
even though it’s the same stuff.
Our airports would be overwhelmed, they say,
we wouldn’t be able to cope
we’re actively working on a solution
but we expect that Brits can
go off to Benidorm and Kos
and cook themselves
a fetching shade of lobster pink
while we turn our nose up at
EU QR codes
and airlines are gasping