Friday, June 15, 2012


I hope you'll tolerate this little diversion from my project for a minute as I think about my dad. What I love about him most: empathy, time, and example.  He did the little things: fixed my knick-knacks, taught me how to ride a bike (I promptly rode straight into a thorn bush), read stories, showed me flowers peeking out of chocolate dirt in the spring, played Atari with me :), played kick-the-can with the cousins on a warm summer night; inspired me with his devotion and his words; showed me how to be gentle with living things; treated me as if I were worth it all.  I never felt like a burden to him, but I felt his belief in me, his fierce pride and devotion.  I lived to be like my dad.  The worst I ever felt was when I let him down.  In a day when men are taught and teach to be tough, don't cry-- I could always cry to my dad. 

Some day when the records are shown and all has been weighed and measured, the greatest deeds will not be the ones done in a stadium, or at a podium, or be celebrated in a trophy case.  Some day those with earthly monuments and medals and glory will honor the courage of the dad who quietly sung night-time songs, soothed nightmares, and cheered for little girls.

If you have any suggestions for improvements on my poems, they are welcome. :)  Thanks for reading!  (Note: I must make a nod to Robert Frost, who wrote one of my favorite poems, The Road Not Taken.  The final line in this poem is very nearly an exact quote of the final line in his poem. ) (Note #2: the roads I'm referring to in this post are near where my parents live, and a little sentimental to me since I've visited my parents there with my dear little ones for years, but my parents will be moving soon.  I've had many happy moments there...esp. since at home I get to plod along on my treadmill :))

The High Road

I used to run on the
Black road
Toward the high school
As cars whooshed by.

Then my dad

Showed me

His favorite road,

High above the valley,

An overgrown path

Next to a canal

With trees bending down

To drink the water.

I had to climb to get there,

But I loved

Its tawny-honey-yellow leaves in fall,

Its swirls,

The way specks of sun

Glint off the water.

In lazy summer,

A mother duck splashed out of the grass

And her babies followed: pop, pop, pop, pop.

I went there in the spring,

Carpet fluorescing with green

And new insect life.

And in winter,
Crunching white snow

As bare-boned branches

Scratched the sky.

Now I've been there in all the seasons,

Ran with sister, laughing and talking,

Walked there with husband,

New life inside me, (threw up in the grass)

Traipsed with little legs till the

Bend in the path.

But mostly alone,

Thinking, sorting, becoming.

And last,

Meadows of grass skirting

Wooded mountains,

And a little hollow,
Where I felt so much

The nearness of


And awareness of my need for His help,

I knelt down (twice)

And prayed

In the middle of my run.

My dad showed me a higher


And it has made all the


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