Russell Reza-Khaliq Gonzaga has hosted and organized events and workshops including the Sierra Poetry Festival, the Center Camp Spoken Word Stage at Burning Man, and the weekly ELYSEUM Writers Workshops at Harbin Hot Springs. Russell is Poet Laureate Emeritus of Lake County (2012-2014) and has represented San Francisco for three years at the National Poetry Slam. As an Arts Educator, he has worked with several organizations including YouthSpeaks and WritersCorps. He is also the recipient of the Certificate of Honor from the Board of Supervisors and a Mayor's declaration of Russell Gonzaga Day in San Francisco. Currently, Russell is the new Poetry Editor for The Fabulist and works the deli counter in his neighborhood grocery store.
In this haunting hay(na)ku poem, San Francisco poet Russell Reza-Khaliq Gonzaga uses vivid text fragments to capture the disorienting social, cultural and mythic tensions of the COVID-19 pandemic’s early days.