A Poem for Holy Week

April 15, Tuesday of Holy Week.

The children are out of school on holiday around here, and the shiny April spring rings out with their laughter.  It's a delicate tinkling though, mostly, mingling with the sound of the river-stream, and the singing birds, and the distant calling of gulls.  The daffodil season has turned over.  Now is the time of bluebells.

There's a sort of quiet that settles on Holy Week, even when you're not looking for it.  I would say that though unconscious, the knowledge of it lingers there, in the back of your mind, except it doesn't--it's not in the mind at all, but all around, somehow.  More than anything, to me this year's Holy Week suggests rest.

I wrote a poem this evening, and Holy Week kind of runs behind it I think, like marble threaded in stone.  Or maybe not.  I'll let you decide.

A second draft:

I like to walk at evening when
today has cooled, ready to be swallowed
by tomorrow, all blue swells and valleys,
the flavor set in.   I need the clumps in me
to settle as well, like silk-rich silt
into my limbs, by skipping soles
over mud and tendons
of root-wood by the river:
the mineral smell of new grass shoots and
luscious, moist mushrooms from the morning's
breakfast--when the waking daylight hours steeled themselves
like girls gathering their skirts to cross
a terrain of potentialities.  Out of many that brush
their hems, a few will catch like burrs
on sheep's unshorn spring fleece. 
copyright L.C. Ricardo.   all rights reserved



April 13, Palm Sunday.

"A portrait of my child, once a week, every week, in 2014."

Afon:  a rare photo-smile standing next to the phone booth.

We got up early and went to Conwy on Friday, which was perfect luck, because the temperature dropped and the sun hid its face immediately after for the rest of the weekend.  It was a mother-son outing.  We brought our own lunches, and the bus ride took over an hour with all the stops and back-roads.

I thought he would be extraordinarily interested by the resident castle in Conwy (and my personal favorite in Wales), but he wasn't.  So rather than spend the extra money for admission, we went down to the quay where this picture was taken, stopped in at the library, strolled in town, petted the tame hawks and owls in the garden next to the Knight Shop, and bought some penny sweets.  Wine gums are my favorite.   I might have stolen one or two or ten.

We popped our heads into a small child's shoe store, and Afon immediately took to a primary color pair.  Since he'd been needing new shoes anyway, we bought them one size up, so he can have them well into summer.


Welsh Daybook (a.m.)

April 12, Feast of Pope St. Julius I, a staunch defender of the Faith against the Arian heresy.

7:55 am  //  wake, morning offering

8:00 am  //  dress, wash face

8:10 am  //  start laundry

8:20 am  //  breakfast

8:40 am  //  reply to Facebook messages and emails

9:05 am  //  brush teeth, apply makeup

9:15 am  //  meditation

9:40 am  //  study Welsh

10:10 am  //  Afon wakes--feed, dress, tend to Afon

10:45 am  //  wash dishes, tidy up, chores, laundry

12:00 noon  //  lunch


This is just a basic outline.  Some days start later, and the time slots are rounded off.  Some days I don't get a good start at all; others, I give up halfway through, or have some errand calling me away from the house.  This is an ideal morning.

Some things I've learned:

  • If at all possible, I ought to dress first thing in the morning.  It gives me a sense of something already accomplished and a demeanor prepared to face the day.  I tend to want to put it off because I take a long time choosing outfits.  I suppose I could lay out something the night before, but that's a bit too proactive for my personality. 
  • Clean as you go.  It saves you from having to do one big clean later on and reduces anxiety.  (It really helps if you can teach this nifty trick to your husband!  I'm still working on that one.) 
  • If I'm feeling a bit under the weather or depressed, for any reason, give myself a free pass for the day and rest or do something emotionally fortifying, like reading a good book or going for a meandering walk.  If I feel renewed afterward, I can pick up where I left off.  If not, the tasks and tidying will still be there tomorrow! 
  • Try to have something special planned for every day.  It breaks up the monotony and gives a sense of purpose.  So far, I've had: Welsh class, writing session at the library, Mama-toddler playgroup, planting seeds with Afon. 
  • Laundry is the alchemical key to eternity.  (Note to self: put this in a book some day.)