Postcards from Malthusia DAY SIXTY-TWO: Bethan Manley

Recipe for a Pandemic

1. First ensure your cupboards are full.

It doesn’t matter if you have never eaten

jackfruit before. You will definitely need it.

At some point

2. In the case that you suddenly

become violently ill, you will need

the entire supply of toilet roll

from your nearest supermarket.


3. If this isn’t enough, try the supermarket

in the next town. Even though this is not

a symptom of the pandemic

4. When the Government tells you

it is time to self-isolate. Do not listen.

Go for a pint in the local with your mates.

You’re young, healthy, it won’t affect you.

Don’t worry about your eighty-year-old gran

who now only takes parcels

through her front window.

           She’ll be fine.

5. Repeat steps 1 and 2 until you have

to sit on the toilet roll because your sofa

is somewhere under all the pasta

you’ve been hoarding, dive into the giant

spaghetti sofa if you’re feeling dangerous

6. Now pop down to the corner shop and see

if they have any more toilet roll. Shout

at the man behind the till when there’s none left

it is clearly his fault.



Bethan Manley is 21and is studying English Language and Creative Writing at the University of Gloucestershire. She likes poetry because it is an avenue of expressing yourself without limitations and this is her first publication. Originally a singer/songwriter, Bethan made the change to poetry in 2018 a way of exploring her Welsh heritage and mental health.



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