One of my students observed this: it is like we are actually in Purgatorio right now. The pandemic worries them deeply, and the time we take reading and discussing literary work is not exactly a break from that; it is a productive way to process it. Dante is more hopeful about human capacities than you might expect.
In light of school closings and many parents suddenly dealing with homeschooling reality, I’m offering an English and literary studies course online for middle school and high school students. Register for the twice-a-week sessions or drop in for writing, reading, discussion.