Keepapitchinin, the Mormon History blog » “Flu Time”

“Flu Time”

By: Ardis E. Parshall - January 18, 2010

We’ll have another, more substantial post up in a few hours – I need to check an item or two at the library first. In the meantime, maybe you’ll enjoy this poem written by 16-year-old Hazel Workman (later Walker, 1902-1980), of Hurricane, Utah, describing another time like the season we are passing through now.

“Flu” Time

Long weeks ago, in days of old,
When we could walk through town at will,
When those you met were not disguised,
And everything was not so still –

Ah, yes! ’twas little thought we then,
This town so soon would change its ways,
That we should draw into our shells
And hibernate ’till better days.

I speak to no one on the street,
I know them not, though close I’ve passed,
Each face is covered well with gauze.
(Pride must have come to them at last.)

They won’t allow a transient near,
They guard the road the whole day thru,
All just because some few in town
Have taken down with Spanish “Flu.”

How glad I’ll be when this is done,
When we can show our face once more,
And take up customs, thick with dust,
And step with ease outside the door.



  1. Date ?? 1918??

    Comment by John Tippets — January 18, 2010 @ 7:37 am

  2. Wow — 16 years old!

    Comment by Hunter — January 18, 2010 @ 8:03 am

  3. Amazing! How often things cycle round (virus, people’s responses, etc.). If you had said that was written today and changed ‘Spanish’ to ‘Swine’ I would not have batted an eye.


    Comment by SteveP — January 18, 2010 @ 2:58 pm

  4. As I have benn writing my parents’ life histories one question I have had about my Mother (born in Heber in 1910) was how they were impacted by the Spanish Flu….this poem gives a perspective that was likely true in Heber. Q. Were LDS services; Sunday School, Sacrament, Mutual, etc. cancelled at any point in some areas?

    Comment by John Tippets — January 23, 2010 @ 10:14 am

  5. Meetings were canceled for at least a few weeks everywhere I know of John; if there was some place where meetings were NOT canceled, that would be an anomaly.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — January 23, 2010 @ 10:42 am

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