Poetry submitted by TWiV listeners

Since, in vitro, spike affects neuron cells,
And made rats not feel pain quite so well,
Might reducing pain in rat toes
be what’s going on in your nose?
Is this why folks with Covid can’t smell?


A tsunami of virus washes over the land…
Clinging to scientific truth some are saved!
Others drown holding on to rocks of ignorance.

–Wayne G

Informed Trump, Knew The Truth, Deadly Virus.
Miracle Hope, From A Dope, Lied To Us.
We Must Now, Remove The Dolt.
So Get Out, And Go Vote.
Do It Now, No Delay, Protect Us.


Alabama highcoo.
What’s the difference
Ignorance and apathy
I don’t know, don’t care.


There once was an anti-masker,
Who was also an anti-vaccer.
He got Covid-19 and was never more seen!
And nobody missed the damned bastard!


Rac-an-yell on, please!
Testify, TWiV, your beliefs;
The truth must have teeth


Couldn’t leave the bed.
I coughed, alone and so scared.
TWiV was my lifeline.

Masks are cool
Just wear one, don’t be a fool.

Before you speak of your rights
Just remember those who lost their fights.
Those who wake up drenched in sweat
From days of torture they can’t forget

They found forms to write their wills
In case they succumbed to all their ills.
Cried out for someone to be there
When they walked too far and gasped for air.
For those who qualify for financial benefits if infected
But false negative tests left them rejected.

They found forms to write their wills
In case they succumbed to all their ills.
Cried out for someone to be there
When they walked too far and gasped for air.
For those who qualify for financial benefits if infected
But false negative tests left them rejected.

For long hauler patients
Who long ago ran out of patience
Whose doctors denied that something was wrong
And they tired of hearing that same song.

Please wear the mask
It’s not just for me that I ask.
It’s for others not yet left with lasting ick
From a virus… the kind that can make you sick.


High sensitivity makes PCR tests seem the hero
But the accuracy of a test which you can’t get is zero!


So many false facts
Nowhere to turn, so confused
Then TWiV cleared the fog


New Zealand was virus free
It came back suddenly
This thing came from bats
Could it now be in cats?
Plausible hypothesisee?


There twice was a virus named SARS,
The second of which closed the bars,
Some said it’s just flu,
But the rest of us knew,
It’s a serious pain in the arse.


Fauci the Doctor
Won’t lie for the President
He deals with the facts


There Was Once A New Virus Plight,
That Proved Our Politicians Not Bright.
They Listened To Heads Phony,
Not To The Very Wise Tony.
And Now We Are In A Terrible Fight.


Sampling each other
Stochastic subunits form
Metastable cores

The virus
Scattered seeds dormant
Inert til host encountered
A life redefined


COVID-19 clouds
Can only be dispelled by
The sunlight of TWIV



Today I trembled
at the ways I touched, not yours
but my lips, eyes, nose.


We social distance
Vinny and the gang do too
To stop the ‘rona


There once was a Dr. called Fauci.
He deems America’s Covid response quite slouchy.
He advocates isolation and testing is the rule
While implying that Trump is a fool.
This makes our ‘emperor’ quite grouchy.


Ever since this pandemic occurred
Out from our own homes we have been lured
Symptoms are varied
Doctors are harried
This damn virus is one right bastard

Government choices
Poor black brown deaths more often
Is it genocide


The rain of truth,
leaves now shimmering…
Washed clean!


There once was an HSV virion
Who found home in a lady’s ganglion.
She was late to observe
And it got on her nerve
Now ’till death she will have a companion.


There once was a germ from Kinshasa
Who desired to be bigger than Lassa
He stayed south of Euphrates
Until came the 80s
Now he integrates here to Mombasa

‘Twas the night before tenure review, and all thro’ the city
Not a creature was stirring, not even Vinny
New papers were hung by the chimney with care
In hopes Science, Cell, or Nature would soon pick theirs
The postdocs were nestled, all snug in their beds
While visions of funding danc’d in their heads
Ma in her ‘kerchief, and I in my cap
Had settled our brains for a long winter’s nap
When out in the lab there arose such a clatter
I sprang from my bed to see what was th’ matter
Away to the NEIDL, I flew like a flash
Tore open vacuum locks, and threw on my mask
The moon on the breast of the new fallen snow
Gave a plaque assay’s lustre to objects below
When what to my wondering eyes should appear
But a miniature sleigh, pulled by eight viridae
With an old driver, so lively and quick
I knew in a moment, that it must be St. Dick
More rapid than a trout jumps, his followers they came
And he whistled and shouted, and call’d all by name
“Now! Picorna, now! Toga, now! Arena, and Flavi
“On! Bunya, on! Corona, on! Astro and Reo
“To the top of the sequencer, and the Great Polio Wall!
“Mutate! Mutate!, Mutate away all!”
As lab techs and postdocs, before tenured faculty fly
If they meet with an obstacle, they just want to cry
So to the bench-top, the coursers, together they flew
With the sleigh full of phages – and St. Dickson too
And then in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing, of each little hoof
As I drew in my head, and was turning around
Down the chimney, St. Dick — he came with a bound
He was dress’d all in fur, from his head to his foot
And his clothes were all tarnish’d with dye stains and soot
A bundle of Dick’s books, was strung on his back
And he look’d like a peddler, opening his pack
His eyes – how they twinkled! his dimples how merry
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry
His droll little mouth, was drawn up like a bow
And the beard of his chin, was as white as the snow
The stump of a pipette, he held tight in his teeth
And mist encircled his head like a viral capsid wreath
He had a broad face, and a little round belly
That shook when he laugh’d, like a bowl full of jelly
He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf
And I laugh’d when I saw him, in spite of myself
A wink of his eye, and a twist of his head
Soon gave me to know, I had nothing to dread
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work
And fill’d the stockings with his sixth edition book
And laying his finger aside of his nose
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose
He sprung to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle
And away they all flew, like the down of a thistle
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight
Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night


There once was a virus name Vincent
Who appeared to all as innocent
But as it turned out
As it floated about
It mutated into something magnificent


Shares science knowledge for free
Help him with some funds


Cellular Reception

Out of my comfort zone
lifelong learning meets danger, even death,
I study Vincent Racaniello’s
Virology 2020, Lecture #2
The Infection Cycle.
Vince from NYC’s Columbia
outlines important definitions –
it will be on the exam, he warns.
But auditing the course on YouTube
makes me immune
from the exam ——- not the virus.
Resistant cells have no reception
Susceptible cells are necessary but not sufficient
Permissive cells are necessary but not sufficient
Infection troubles multiply
when susceptible is also permissive
and replication exceeds sufficiency
at human costs beyond my comprehension.
Disney World shut down but that doesn’t
our world from being
a small, small, world.


Non-living they are
All obligate parasite,


viruses are dead
(s)he said still nucleotides
to live make you sick


Vectors gently buzz
The standing water conceals
A hidden danger

The Zika virus
Supportive therapy sucks
We need a vaccine

Mosquito vector
Single stranded RNA

Coughing and sneezing
Even more offensive, the
Fecal oral route


Now that I’m inside,
Retroviral integrase,
Keeps me here to hide.

Boy, here comes Aedes aegypti,
Unfortunate vector flies by,
Fevers, yellow or dengue,
Chikungunya’s a bad way,
Now we watch as Zika draws nigh


All those interested in science
On Sunday they are in compliance
They wait for the show
That makes our minds glow
The world has a viral alliance


My virus of choice is phi-11.
I studied S. aureus U1 and their brethren
With this phage on your side,
you’ll transduce til you sigh
and say “cloning with phi is like heaven!”

A close second, though, would RESTV,
even though it gives me the creeps.
Cause I lived in Arlington
not so very far (ling-ton)
from this virus that threatened DC


A baby’s first virome can be very complex,
with a lot of vaccines to digest,
A sigh of delight
Then a sneeze at night,
And it’s off to the doctor we go


There once was a vet who loved cats,
As well as science, microbes, and rats,
A PhD she did start,
In virology (not Art!),
And now in third year she is going bats!


There once was a virus named Zika,
Whose effects we so rarely did speak of,
but she came to Miami
threw us into a clammy,
Now all Zika abstracts are “on fleek-a”.