The Lockdown Hugger

A note from poet Paul:

Neuroscientists reckon that a good hug should last about 20 seconds. That way you get the full blast of oxytocin which is the feel good ‘love hormone’.

With the world in the state it’s in that’s a lot of feel good that we’re sadly going to be missing out on. As luck would have it, a pillow or cushion (although nowhere near as good as the real thing) can act as a good temporary replacement. For this poem I recommend having one to hand!



He had to confess it He was a hugger A squeezer A pleaser An ‘in your space’ mugger

Throughout the whole year He would open his arms He’d smile And he’d greet And he’d bring on the charms

Always with care And never with force As good hugs are welcome Consenting Of course

But this year was strange His welcome constrained And our friend Found himself Quite emotionally drained

No festive embraces No greetings of cheer His outstretched limbs Brought retreating And fear

Not a lack of love Or absence of care Just a world Where each person Was rightfully scared

Of touching and holding A world so morose “We love you But please we implore- Don’t come close”

As he sat all alone On his bed Without love He looked out the window The sky up above

He took hold of his pillow And he gave it A squish And followed it up With a seasonal wish

“I wish this was mother, My father, my brother, My sister, my grandma My neighbour, My lover

To strangers and not To my friends And my foes I speak to you all This hug is to show

That love is not just A physical thing It’s not just the tingle That contact Can bring

It’s knowing that somewhere Your heart is near mine Our worlds and our lives All entangled Entwined

This hug is for all Wherever you are We don’t need a miracle Blessing Or star

We just need to know That we’re missed Is all A message, a card A wave or a call”

And with that he rested His cushion in hand And though This hadn’t gone Quite as he’d planned

He knew that his arms Would be there For next year When he’d hug the whole world Without issue or fear.


By Paul Jenkins

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