“My Mother Ceridwen” by Helene Cardona

"Ceridwen" by Christopher Williams

“Ceridwen” by Christopher Williams

My Mother Ceridwen

The light on the icon,

the way I see her in my dreams,

the core of her at the edge of darkness

in a magic cauldron always full,

never exhausted,

that brings her back to life

guarded by a golden serpent

coiled in the shape of an egg,

the world snake marshaling

inner reserves,

the seed of a new journey,

a glimpse of the mysterious and elusive,

a woman in a wreath made of morning glories.

This is how she lands on the page,

slanted, looking out in space,

integrated within me

save the blue sky across her face.


From Life in Suspension, forthcoming from Salmon Poetry.


Hélène Cardona is a poet, linguist & actor, author of Dreaming My Animal Selves (Salmon Poetry, 2013), winner of the Pinnacle Book Award and the 2014 Readers’ Favorite Award in Poetry; The Astonished Universe (Red Hen Press, 2006); and Life in Suspension (Salmon Poetry, 2016). Her translation Ce que nous portons (Éditions du Cygne) of What We Carry by Dorianne Laux came out in September 2014.

She also translated Beyond Elsewhere by Gabriel Arnou-Laujeac, Baudelaire, Rimbaud, Renard, Crickillon, René Depestre, Ernest Pépin, and her father José Cardona. She holds a Master’s in American Literature from the Sorbonne, taught at Hamilton College & Loyola Marymount University, and received fellowships from the Goethe-Institut & Universidad Internacional de Andalucía. She is Chief Executive Editor of Dublin Poetry Review and Levure Littéraire, and Managing Editor of Fulcrum. Publications include Washington Square, World Literature Today, Poetry International, The Warwick Review, The Irish Literary Times, & many more.

Acting credits include Chocolat, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, The Hundred-Foot Journey, X-Men: Days of Future Past, Muppets Most Wanted, World War Z, Mumford, and Happy Feet 2. For Serendipity she co-wrote with director Peter Chelsom and composer Alan Silvestri the song Lucienne, which she also sang.

One thought on ““My Mother Ceridwen” by Helene Cardona

  1. […] The Original Van Gogh’s Ear Anthology, My Mother Ceridwen […]

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