Lazy Friday morning, or: Before Shabbat

                         I sit and write about the
                         Playmobil toys scattered
on the floor; stuffed animals, pillows
on the sofa; markers, colored pencils
on the table; Disney princess dolls and
                         plastic ponies everywhere; 
                         a 3D Disney castle puzzle 
in front of me, fully constructed; fish
in little aquarium, swimming around
in all directions; bookshelf, full of
                         books, toys, tchotchkes;
                         colored balloons left over
from our daughter's sixth birthday; gifts
from parents, grandparents; traffic sounds
from the left; the street not quite visible
                         through the large rectangular
                         flower grilled window;
we sit quietly at our oval wooden table;
we just woke up Friday morning; already
we are, each of us, busy with projects;
                         paint by numbers, color
                         within the lines, compose

The above poem is my take on d’Verse’s ‘Setting’ prompt.

The writing challenge: Bring us to a time and place in your poem. Give us the smells, sights and sounds of your setting. Note that settings can be real or fictional, or a combination of both real and fictional elements.

N.B. On Shabbat, which begins at sunset on Friday and ends upon sunset on Saturday, Jews traditionally do not write, paint, nor use electronic devices (among other restrictions). In essence, according to Jewish tradition, we are not to “create” on Shabbat. Therefore, Friday mornings are the perfect time to engage in our respective creative projects.

91 thoughts on “Lazy Friday morning, or: Before Shabbat”

  1. Very nice poem! And I see that your wife shares a similar interest to what I too, enjoy- paint by numbers!! It is one of the most fun ways to pass time! Stay blessed and safe all of you. ❤️❤️🙏💐

        1. I don’t really know, my brain doesn’t work that way anymore- I am under investigation for some type of Cognitive disorder due either to epilepsy brain damage and my brain nolomger seems to solve puzzles.

        2. Not really I have another at the end of March. Currently in hospital. In much pain which flummoxed tjem simce no test shows why.

  2. Not just a Friday morning before Shabbat, David – for many people it’s any day during the pandemic. I love the busyness of this poem, created by the list of everything you can see and the layout and line breaks, and the only glimpse of the outside world ‘through the large rectangular / flower grilled window – and the lull in the final lines made me take a deep breath, even though everyone is busy with projects!

    1. ❤ Kim

      You're right; that's 100% true, but unlike other days during our current lock-down in Israel, my wife and I weren't working – we were having fun instead!

      Shabbat shalom,

  3. nothing has changed since the days of the Pharisees – I mean ‘must not to do’…

    1. Tatiana,

      Well, it depends from what perspective – in the days of the Pharisees, they didn’t have to make religious rulings about electrical appliances, for example 😉

      Shabbat shalom,

      1. Thank heavens, though, given you mustn’t work on the Sabbath, the maxim would be don’t use them. Not even the electric door🤣then the caveats, an entire new law, in themselves.

        1. Luckily you are not a farmer. I assume milking cows is allowable, removing the desired milk.
          Everything pertains to the 7th day, just one day, o and holidays. What about the 613? How do you manage these today without the Temple?

        2. Andrew,

          The whole of rabbinic Judaism (i.e. the Mishnah, Talmud and all halakhic words since then) is the answer to your question 🙂


      1. I have returned as threatened David, to tell you a realism — Poetry is the statement of power that sets the soul free, to be, exactly who you are — and in being just that, to introduce your truth to the world!..

  4. We celebrate a festival in our community (not others), to worship pen and inkpot. On that day, we don’t write, but reading allowed. It is however getting diluted gradually. Do you strictly follow restrictions every week?

      1. My question was whether you follow restrictions mentioned by you in letter and spirit every week while celebrating Sabbath.

        The festival I was referring to is the worship of God Chitragupta, who is believed to keep records (of course by using pen and inkpot) of human beings on the earth and punish or reward them accordingly.

  5. You captured a beautiful family moment here David – thank you for sharing this very personal snapshot of your life!

  6. Excellent writing. I like the use of “p” in the poem. It pulls together the relaxed atmosphere of the poem in playful style..

    ‘..playmobile….parents… puzzle…paint by numbers.”

    The result – you told many vivid stories of home, in a few lines

    Nicely done, David! Kudos

  7. enjoyed reading this intimate piece – I felt I was right there with you and – I ended up promising myself to honor MY everyday life more from now. I am sure I’ll fail plenty a time, but it’s a start.

    1. I’m not so “in touch” with myself as all that, Barbara 🙂

      I wrote this poem very much in moment, in response to a writing prompt because no other ideas immediately presented themselves to me.

      Thank you!

  8. PS somewhere you say in a haibun the haiku ‘must’ contain sensual/seasonal image. By all means do follow that rule. There is however a non-school of experimental/existential Haiku/Haibun without this rule. I have not quite made the frog’s splash there but I am still peddling. Shalom Shabbath, B.

  9. A wonderfully painted word picture of your setting! I love how you each go about your morning routine!
    we just woke up Friday morning; already
    we are, each of us, busy with projects;

    1. Very much so, Dwight; and, in truth, it isn’t every Friday that is like that ~ but it did feel very cozy and right for a poem ❤


  10. You take us right into your pre-Shabbat world, filled with concentrated activity before the coming rest. Lovely picture.

  11. Happy Shabbat David.
    A wonderful tour of your heartfelt home. It seems the toys have changed but the clutter of my visiting Kids and animals always remains and keeps a happy home. We’re babysitting my Grand Cat this weekend … 🤣

      1. 😹😹😹I would if I could but he is stuff in a room alone so my animals don’t terroize him but he has lots of visits and I’ll be acclimating them one by one.😻😽😾+🐈🐶(H &H)= chaos!!!! 🤣😜

  12. Well I learned something new today as I am not aware of the Jewish tradition. How lovely to be creative and just have fun during that time.

  13. Play-Doh is timeless. ‘In the beginning God created..’ Fun to roll in my hands amongst our adult (mostly seniors), bible study.

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