I am one

Sunday Walsh | Posted on August 8, 2016

My name is Sunday Walsh. Apropos of nothing, I just had my first birthday. The relevance of that, apparently, is that the angle subtended by the Earth-sun system through the plane of the ecliptic is the same as that angle when I was born.

I'm writing this because Daddy has no ideas. Writer’s block, they call it. I can't have writer’s block, because I can’t write. I know some vowel sounds though, and I'm acquiring consonants. I can roll my ‘r’s (Argentinian nanny). Daddy can't do that.

Daddy has been through some rough times, lately. Not as rough as his close friend Robert (who could also roll his ‘r’s). Robert died a couple of weeks ago. Then, a couple of days ago, ‘out of the blue’, Daddy got a French knighthood – Chevalier des Artes et des Lettres. He was pretty chuffed about that. ‘An acknowledgement that Mona has some global reach’, he muttered.

But (and this is the genesis of his writer’s block), how can he be happy and feel pride (it's a ‘deadly sin’, after all), when his friends have suffered? In fact, does he have the right to feel joy while there is suffering in the world? All philosophers and priests grapple with this, and I'm not the one to resolve it, since I spend all my time blissfully free of the burden of knowledge (my uncle put it this way: ‘my biggest problem what to eat, my biggest love my sister[s]’). Daddy seems to think he has insight into all this. But in the here and now, he doesn't know how to resolve his personal conflicts.

Pride can burn through all that is worthy. Stop giving Daddy prizes, or he might turn into a right royal prick. I need Daddy to be nice to me for a few more years.

But he still wants to be a member of the Order of the Elephant.


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Essie | August 8, 2016 at 04:13 pm

Nothing works like a baby to keep your heart soft and mind focussed on what really matters to you.

Ellen | August 8, 2016 at 04:22 pm

Daddy should relax and have fun and stop being so Catholic .God wants us to be happy. Simple ! You try and remind him of that Sunday. Besides he needs to be a good role model for you in how you seize and validate your happiness.

Robyn McRae | August 8, 2016 at 04:54 pm

Oh...Seems like daddy is human after all...thank heavens for that little one. Hope you had a great first birthday

THE GOOD PIRATE | August 8, 2016 at 05:06 pm

I believe the world is a shitful place where Beautiful things happen.

Poppy (4yrs going on 14) | August 8, 2016 at 05:24 pm

Don't worry Sunday

You'll re-wire his neural paths for many years to come to suit your needs. It's a keystone of 'survivalism' he'll be mulling as it occurs.

7437l | August 8, 2016 at 06:38 pm

Elephants are wise
Knowing grief
They value their family.

Honors do not make a man
they illustrate, decorate
in their bestowing
unlike death that casts a mantle
we all must wear,
it only requires relinquishing life to die
Robert remains alive in spirit as long as he is
Plant a tree in his honour.

Michelle Warren | August 8, 2016 at 06:55 pm

Dear Sunday, Happy 1st Birthday. Tell Daddy, that those of us who are lucky and enjoy good health and even wealth, should do a fabulous job of living well and being happy, on behalf of all those who cannot, and each day spare them a thought. It is not a privilege but a responsibility. Dear Robert, such a shame, a good life cut short. Love Michelle and Dave

Anna C | August 8, 2016 at 07:41 pm

Dear Sunday, please tell your Daddy it is possible (although confusing and somewhat upsetting) to feel pride and grief and overwhelming sadness all at the same time. Tell him that all his friends love him, and if the dead ones were still here they would be sharing his conflicted joy at life and raising a big fat glass to his well-earned pride.

Ross Stokell | August 9, 2016 at 04:08 pm

Maybe you could let your daddy know, that he has many friends and allies to cheer him up, and who support not only his originality, but also his unique life force.
This has lifted Tasmania out of the doldrums, and provided a real heartbeat to the state.
The pulse of progress beats strongly in my chest as well, and I would like to develop an industry incubator to more rapidly put local concepts on a larger stage.
I hope to meet him soon and share some of my creativity with him, just for fun, because doldrums are dull drums!

Valerie Talbot | August 9, 2016 at 04:50 pm

Happy Birthday Sunday. Congratulations David you deserve the accolades.

etruite | August 9, 2016 at 07:54 pm

I reckon this was written on Monday

etruite | August 9, 2016 at 07:57 pm

....... by Tuesday's child

Brendan warn | August 9, 2016 at 11:58 pm

Hello Sunday. My name is Brendan. We've not met. It seems that your daddy would need to take the time to feel all emotion. The weight of the world is not on his shoulders. He does amazing things though... He does have the right to feel joy and pain. It very much saddens me to hear the news of Robert. I am holding a smile for him with fond memories. Thank you for your post. Please say hi to dad . Please pass on I am so sorry to hear about Robert. x

Rhonda Wainwright | August 8, 2016 at 02:49 pm

Dear Sunday tell your Daddy not to worry & to enjoy life's small pleasures as his friend Robert would not like to see him sad.As we age we lose those close to us & its hard with each & every one...we are so lucky to greet each day,smell the flowers & enjoy family & friends.Your Dad must have deserved that award not sure about the Elephant thing..will post a poem for your Dad shorty ta ta

Rhonda Wainwright | August 8, 2016 at 02:59 pm


For your Daddy

TB or not TB | August 8, 2016 at 03:03 pm

Happy 1st birthday little one. You might want to tell your Daddy to just chillax and spend quality time with you because that is what all good Daddy's do - spend time with their princesses. There is plenty of time for him to receive unwanted prizes and attention. We peeps in Tasmania however will keep him on the straight and narrow because we just like your Daddy because he's such a good bloke not because he keeps winning wanky prizes and honours from overseas. So what if he has writers block it could be worse, like some terminal illness but alas he has you to focus on Miss Sunday and so long as you are being loved up he doesn't have a worry in the world. Blessings little one xx

Terry Aulich | August 8, 2016 at 08:39 pm

Tell Daddy he is irrepressible so he doesn't need awards, just a quiet nod in his direction should be enough. We live for those who have gone before us, for those who live now and for those in the future.

Sharon | August 8, 2016 at 09:07 pm

Well Sunday, you are very lucky to have a Daddy who will show you the nuances and wild contradictions of being human. A never dull, full life awaits you both. I am sorry for your loss, grief makes you question everything - what you truly value and who you want to be. Stay strong and continue to find the beauty in all things. And congrats on your Daddy's knighthood! His bravery and generosity deserves recognition.

Val Monaghan | August 9, 2016 at 06:04 am

Hullo Sunday At your tender age you are far removed from the ache that us adults know when we lose someone who's special to us. Your father is betwixt emoions about the loss of his friend and the honour of being recognised by France for Mona. Especially a great honour as France has been embattled in many ways and yet someone took the time to think about other places and the significance of Mona and praise your father with such an award Keep on rolling your rrrrr's We would all so be lucky if we had that ability The Order of the Elephant eh? perhaps when the solar system aligns other than for birthdays Cheerio ________________________________

Bronwyn Bain | August 9, 2016 at 08:43 am

Dear Sunday.

Your daddy has built one of the most amazing museums in the world. (And I have seen many) I loved going there...

The Dalai Lama says "Everything is as it should be"

A friend (and a great artist) wrote this poem. I hope you enjoy it

… I cannot
think that this, all
this, is anything but
night-flying, with the
vague remnants of the
map somewhere deep
inside us, as we steer by
stars, sun or anything
that dazzles, that’s bright,
that lights, even for a second, the labyrinthine
trails within…
Domenico de Clario .

Take care

Terry Carr | August 9, 2016 at 09:12 am

Little Sunday, I find living up to the expectations of high praise is unsettling to say the least, thats what awards tend to do. Take comfort in the knowledge that they are not asked for, but given to make others feel good about celebrating something that they love too. Wishing you a wonderful year ahead.

Marcos Gogolin | August 9, 2016 at 10:12 am

Your dad might disagree but there is a good chance that goodness and all non materials exists before and beyond, that life is a miracle and death is the nothingness -- like the darkness or disbelief.
Although a surprise to us all, there is a goodness chance that Robert is live and well :)

klektik | September 13, 2016 at 02:58 pm

Dear David , Happy birthday. Congratulations on your achievements over the last decade.; I would especially like to mention the schools garden programme. Vanessa teaches at Austin’s Ferry Primary and has told me that the garden is very fantastic! Getting the kids to grow their own food, with your help has been wonderful, and I believe it is the first step in breaking the cycle of dependence that is intergenerational to a large percentage of the students. Getting the chefs to come to the schools and prepare what they have grown into delicious food will help the programme reverberate through the whole community. Thank you again.. I hope you are spoilt rotten by those around you on your day. sincerely Shuvus

Mr Shane | August 11, 2016 at 11:35 pm

I know why Walsh has "writer's block" it's because he has surrounded himself with more or less sycophants. Their writing is atrocious for content (except for Jane).

Pay me and I'll give you "perturbation" for an "antifragility" ethos.

Pat | August 12, 2016 at 04:42 pm

Tell dad that its grief, and thats ok. And sing along to a song for him.

Julie Martin | September 22, 2016 at 04:18 am

Dear Sunday
If Daddy were a Member of the Order of Elephants maybe he could have Pavlova with Pavlos, the Crown Prince of Greece !!
What do you think ...?
Id love a pen pal if your not too busy.
My friend Steve Manning in the UK built a life size herd of elephants from willow and Moss for PRINCE PHILIP ....you would love those ....
As a Bone of Fact ,if your daddy ever get the Order he can Hob Knob it with the best and have his own Herd of Elephants ....!
Now Mummy and Daddy may construe them as constructs of magical realism... but don't worry i think because of your age they may think it appropriate as its a lot of fun when your young...........
Bye for now ..
Julie x