And the people stayed home is a journal of life during the 2020 Coronavirus outbreak in England. The title is inspired by a poem attributed to Kitty O’Meara, which circulated on social media as countries all over the world faced the unthinkable and unprecedented prospect of total lock-down:

“And the people stayed home. And read books, and listened, and rested, and exercised, and made art, and played games, and learned new ways of being, and were still. And listened more deeply. Some meditated, some prayed, some danced. Some met their shadows. And the people began to think differently.

“And the people healed. And, in the absence of people living in ignorant, dangerous, mindless, and heartless ways, the earth began to heal.

“And when the danger passed, and the people joined together again, they grieved their losses, and made new choices, and dreamed new images, and created new ways to live and heal the earth fully, as they had been healed.”

-Kitty O’Meara

Writer Maddie Grigg is the pen name of magazine columnist and former local newspaper editor Margery Hookings. She lives in the idyllic Dorset village she calls Lush Places, which she writes about for the oldest women’s weekly magazine in the world, The People’s Friend.