Spring is here and Easter’s on its way; Wednesday Writing Prompt will return on April 24

“Put your mouthful of words away
and come with me to watch
the lilies open in such a field,
growing there like yachts,
slowly steering their petals
without nurses or clocks.”
Anne Sexton, The Complete Poems

Dan (Now Father Daniel Sormani, C.S.SP) and me circa 1962 – last time I was taller than anybody!

In honor of springtime and Holy Week (coming up), my hunger for rest and renewal, and a visit (Hooray!) with my cousin Daniel, whom I haven’t seen in over forty years, I’ll not be online much until April 22nd or so.

The next  Wednesday Writing Prompt will post on April 24.

The next Opportunity Knocks will post on April 25.

I plan to take a serious rest from Facebook, but will on occasion bring you blog updates on opportunities or interesting information. I won’t be visiting blogs, reading email, or posting regularly until after Easter.

silhouettes-of-childrenthere’s little i’d want to live over
but a few moments, with special people,
their memory held safe, gently wrapped,
with affection, like a
gift waiting to be touched,
opened and savored …

ribbon tugged
….. paper unfurled

the scent of other children, brothers,
the timbre of their voices, those early days,
the freshness playing in my mind,
in flickering light, like

an eight-millimeter film
…..of toddlers and youths

haunting the years until today
when i found you again

i reached out 
…..and you reached back

© 2014, poem, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved
Illustration ~ courtesy of George Hodan, Public Domain Pictures.net

My cousin Dan:

What Have We Done That People Can Pick Up Weapons and Kill?, Fr. Daniel Sormani, C.S.Sp.

Fr. Daniel S. Sormani, C.S.Sp.

My cousin is a priest who has lived and worked in Algeria and Dubai and until recently was teaching theology at Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines. He asks in a feature article for The BeZine, What Have We Done that People Can Pick-up Weapons and Kill.  

“We have become our own worst enemy. Whenever we separate the world into ‘them’ and ‘us’, whenever we accept blind generalizations and cease to see a unique individual before us, whenever we forget we are all victims of carefully orchestrated deceit and deception for wealth and power, the force of darkness wins. Bullets will never win this struggle, only the heart and mind will.”

Mom’s rosary beads and Dan’s Arabic Bible



THE FIRST OF SPRING, a poem by Myra Schneider from “Persephone in Finsbury Park”

English Poet Myra Schneider at her 80th Birthday celebration and the launch of her 12th collection
English Poet Myra Schneider at her 80th Birthday celebration and the launch of her 12th collection

for Anne Cluysenaar

A honey sun, the cease of gnawing wind
so we seize the day, unleash ourselves
in the country park, gaze at flowers inscribed To Dad

lying on a bench. They summon a huge bee
to their pink and yellow freesia bells. Dreamily,
I too enter the nectar-laden chambers and feed.

Turning away, we follow the droghte of March track
to the water garden where snowdrops are fading,
daffodils are on the brink of opening

and expectation’s in bloom on naked trees.
Welters of lily stalks in the darks of a pond
are tangles of umbilical cords. Beyond the garden,

beyond the singing of birds is a lake which glitters
as if it’s a source of light. We sit down
on a wicker seat and there you are breathing

in the budding warmth, freed from the last
of October now and that distressed message
you sent before your life was snatched.

You’re stooping over a small plant, stroking
its leaves, tracking the hover-rise of a damsel-fly,
smiling as you follow all the riverlets.

– Myra Schneider

The First of Spring is taken from Myra’s twelfth poetry collection, Persephone in Finsbury Park, which was published last month by Second Light Publications.  It is available  from poet Anne Stewart’s p f poetry site. The site is set up with PayPal, so it works well if you are making a purchase from outside of England. I haven’t read the collection yet, but Myra never disappoints.


Myra’s poem and photograph© Myra Schneider, All rights reserved; published here with the permission of the author; book cover art, Second Light Publications