"The Ballad of Father Gilligan" by William Butler Yeats was a much-improved poem choice this morning. I summarized the plot before I read it (an overworked priest falls asleep and fails to care for a dying parishioner; when he wakes and dashes to the man's house, he discovers God had sent an angel in his likeness). I think that helped my mom track through the storyline.
The poem includes this line:
“Mavrone, mavrone! the man has died,
While I slept on the chair.”
The word "mavrone" drove us into another dictionary dive, where we learned the interjection is an Irish cry of anguish or dismay, meaning "my grief."
My mother then wanted to figure out if "Maverick" is pronounced with two or three syllables. We learned the word is eponymous: Samual A. Maverick was a Texas rancher who didn't brand his cattle. Of course we then looked up "eponym."
All of this dictionary tripping looped into a conversation about the alphabet; soon we were singing "A, You're Adorable" horribly off-key.
"That was terrible!" my mother laughed. And it was!
COVID-19 has blurred my days; a sameness blankets the hours. This is even more so for my parents, who no longer have their Bridge group or shopping trips to break up their week. Zoom Sunday School and church is the only thing on their calendar. So when my sister called last night to schedule an evening of shared movie-watching with her family and my parents (everyone watching from their own homes), I was happy to tell my parents they have an event scheduled. They'll watch "Pocketful of Miracles" Saturday at 5 p.m.
Last night I offered my mom a frozen lime fruit bar for dessert, which she accepted with delight. "I've never had one before!"
Life still holds surprises.