Category Archives: Light verse

For My Mom, The Best of Them All

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My Mother has just turned 87 years old, and in honour of that special occasion, I am posting this poem that I read at our family celebration, here on my blog. She is the best German, Hungarian, Schwabian, Austrian, American, Canadian you could ever have the pleasure of meeting. Yes, She’s all that! The verses describe the time both before and after she was born:

To Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in the land of the USA,
Where the Ohio, the Allegheny, and Monongahela wend their way
Through a place once known as “Iron Town”, for the strength of the people there,
And the industry that drew them, they came with a hope and a prayer.
They came for the chance to “make it”, to pull their own weight and more;
In the year of our Lord, 1906, they knocked on America’s door.
The parents of a daughter (as yet, unborn) Gisella and Louis came,
With their feather ticks, and their pots and pans, and barely a cent to their name.*
Their’s was a people in need of a home, in a country filled with strife;
Like all Schwabians* living in Hungary, they hoped for a better life.
These German speaking Marath’s, were Austrians* in their hearts,
But the borders had changed, and fortunes had changed;
What they needed most was new starts.
New countries, it’s said, are built by those hewing wood and hauling water.
Louis hauled that water as blocks of ice, for the sake of his sons and daughters,
Who all were born, with the passing years, as he tried to put money away,
To return again to his shoe-making trade, before his hair turned grey.
Silver dollars could buy his freedom from ice blocks, and cart and horse,
But the best laid plans of mice and men oft come to naught, of course.
A thief broke in, one fateful night, and stole their nest-egg away.
The shoemaker, bent by the weight of his load, must wait for another day.
Then finally it came, that longed for time, when dollars exceeded their need;
So leather was bought, and shoe-making lasts, and in his hand was a deed.
When Gisella was forty-two years old and Louis was forty-five,
And ten other siblings were already born, the eleventh one did arrive!
Her oldest sister had children by then, who came right over to meet her
And hold their aunt, and kiss her, and whoop round the house, just to greet her!
Her parents called her Regina; in Latin her name means Queen.
She was Queen of their hearts from her very first cry, but most people called her Jean.
Which very soon became Jeannie, of course, to those who loved her best;
That was all that she would answer to; she chose to ignore the rest ―
Be it the priest on Holy Communion day, or the nuns at Catholic School,
So her parents enrolled her in public school, breaking a family rule.
All that whacking of pointers on their desks, and other nun-approved habits,
Had been too much for this sensitive child, friend of pink Easter chicks and rabbits.
So the doctor made her eat brewers’ yeast to clear up her itching skin,
(Which was most likely caused by the nervousness of helping do Easter chicks in,
When they had grown tall and gangly− like the one sister Mary had caught.)
She had tried to kill it with a very dull knife, which proved to be all for naught,
For it still had plenty of stamina to chase Jeannie round their yard,
Wings down, and severed head flapping, with total disregard!)
After fleeing from zombie chickens, she was under adrenaline’s spell;
She would spend her leisurely Saturdays jumping over an open well!
She and her girlfriend would bet one another, about who could make “The Leap”.
If nobody fell in the well, to their death, their allowance they got to keep.
Jeannie also rode tandem down “Suicide Hill”, ’til her cousin knocked out her teeth,
And stole ribbons from the graveyard next door, from every funeral wreath!
The gold foiled “Daughter” plaque, over her bed, sure gave her mother a start!
But the one thing that Jeannie never did, she never broke a heart,
Unless there was a secret admirer on that day that Jeannie left
For a brand new home in Canada, where she arrived, completely bereft,
On the day of her sixteenth birthday, at a house near the township dump,
Where the horse was huge, the cow was crazy, and the rats were well-fed and plump.
The winter they spent there they nearly froze, as the house had no insulation.
They had no car, so she rode her bike to the store by the reservation.
When spring arrived they got to move when the farm-buying terms were complete.
Then Jeannie started going out a bit, with neighbour friends she would meet.
One special night, at a town hall dance, she met a man named Bill.
The stars shone bright on that fateful night; and their very first kiss was a thrill!
Soon wedding bells were ringing, as he took her for his bride,
And she lived happily ever after, with William Peter at her side.
They had a lot of children; she was such a wonderful mother,
That as soon as the crib was empty they filled it with another.
(Well, sometimes not exactly the crib, sometimes the bassinet!)
When Marsha was not quite one years old, she needed her’s longer yet,
So they got themselves a second crib, and later two little beds,
For Vonnie’s, and little Keithie’s, and little Jeannie’s sleepy heads.
And soon enough, they bought bigger beds, as the bigger kids grew and grew,
Then there was one for Kathy, one for Janice, and for Jimmy and Donny too.
(Well, sometimes kids got to share a bed— whatever the room size allowed.)
And they all grew up on a farm so neat that it made every one of them proud.
Mom and Dad worked hard to give us all that any family needed.
They both tried hard to teach us right, and Mom, I’d say you succeeded.
We’ve not leapt over any open wells, or caused any missing teeth;
Nor have we ignored any nuns before, or ripped ribbons from funeral wreaths.
We have tried to make you proud of us, and followed your example,
Except for us having lots of kids. (One or two seemed more than ample.)
But we’re glad that you thought differently, and that you took a gamble.
We’re glad that we’re all here because you and Dad chose to take a leap,
And your parents did too, or they wouldn’t have had you,
And moved near that garbage heap,
Where no one else great would have taken you out, for fear of lurking vermin.
And then you met Dad who would love you so much, Hungarian, Austrian, or German,
Or Schwabian, or American. Well, who could ever determine?
In the end, only one thing matters; this one thing I know is true.
You are a part of the people we loved. And we are a part of you.

 

*The Schwabians are the German people who settled in Hungary, at the urging of the Habsburgh monarchy of Austria, during the eighteenth century, after it was wrested from Turkish occupation.  Although these peasant settlers were from places such as Baden, Bavaria, Alsace, Lorraine, and Schwabia, eventually all of them were being referred to as Schwabians. There were two million of  them in Hungary by 1900, a few years before Louis and Gisella emigrated to the USA. in 1906, seeking, as did many of their countrymen, a place of greater opportunity.

*Louis Marath identified himself as Austrian on his draft registration for the U.S. Army in 1917.

*Our grandmother, Gisella, was a member of a poor peasant family in the early 1900’s. She worked in service as part of the kitchen staff at Apponyi Castle in Lengyel, Hungary, which belonged to  Count Apponyi of the Hungarian royal family. The roof of the castle was destroyed by fire in 1905. This likely led to her loss of employment and subsequent emigration in 1906. The castle roof was  later reconstructed, and the site is a tourist attraction today.

The Best Man From The Bayou

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free-wedding-42Family, Save your money cause the bells are ringing! Right now it’s starting to sound like a department store Santas’ Elf-helper bell-ringing training session. As time passes, it will sound like the Bell Ringers’ Convention my daughter Carrie and her team in Hospitality Food Services at UWO just hosted. Eventually the excitement will grow even more as the time for celebrating moves closer still. Maybe people will turn and give their head a shake and wonder if they are tuning Big Ben. No, that’s just a little much! You can tune a piano, but I’m sure you never need to tune clock chimes! So, what is the occasion for all this tintinnabulation? Not one, not two, not three but… wait for it now…four upcoming weddings in the family!

I’ve told you my family is big and it is getting bigger.(No, it’s not all the awesome pot-luck diners we enjoy!) I will be gaining four new nieces when they marry the four lucky nephews who have persuaded them to jump into this crazy boat of a family of mine. The Titanic was a “ship” people! The happy couples are Aaron and Andrea, Michael and Raelene, Ryan and Ashley, and Lee and Jess.

As the couples go about the business of choosing their wedding party, which is not an easy task sometimes, I am free to indulge my fantasies through verse. Here is a little bit of goofy rhyming whimsy about the best man who wasn’t. And you definitely won’t be asking me to read something special for you at your wedding now I suppose…. Oh well when the muse calls to write you write.Right?

  A Crockodickle Pickle

You’re really in a pickle if the Purple Crockodickle,

That you’ve chosen as your best man for your wedding in July,

Isn’t happy with the colour that you’ve chosen for tuxedos—

So he gets his snout all out of joint and then begins to cry!

His tears are so prolific that they’re raising the Pacific

And he uses as a handkerchief a groomsman’s new silk tie!

He doesn’t like his cummerbund— “Too snug around the waist!”

He can’t be seen in green, you know— or he “will be disgraced!”

Those patent leather shoes, you know “must be too tightly laced!”

And your pocket watch on silver chain he somehow has misplaced!

When you’re all on pins and needles while you’re trying on tuxedos

And the Crockodickle wheedles and he whines to get his way,

Just don’t say “Get lost Mr.” ’til you’ve thought about his sister,

And the “CROCKODICKLE TWISTER!!” things are likely to become.

She might go tell their mother, ’cause you know she loves her brother.

And there’s nothing more voracious than a Crockodickle’s mum!

Hey! I’m curious— how did you and the bride first meet anyway?

Sweet Dreams Little One

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Dreams can seem so real to us that sometimes it is momentarily difficult to tell the dream from reality. I have had that happen a few times in my life. Usually it is when we have a nightmare and wake suddenly and we are confused by the emotional state we are in at the moment. We wonder if what we dreamed is real because it feels real. But in the end we understand the difference because we are adults and we have learned from the experience of life  to know the difference.

I enjoyed a visit with my little nephew Joshua all on his own the other day. He is three, and we played throughout the morning, both of us having a lot of fun. At one point he started telling me about what seemed to have been a frightening dream he had experienced. He seemed to know that it wasn’t real but he wasn’t really sure how to describe it so that I would know that it was more than just something that he had just been thinking about. He just didn’t have all the necessary vocabulary yet. When I asked him if it was a dream he must have remembered his Mummy or Daddy explaining dreams to him before and he said with much relief  “Yes it was. It was a dream”. He relaxed when I reassured him that dreams aren’t real, that they are something our brain does on its own, like a movie it plays for us. They are sometimes about the things we might have been thinking about before we went to sleep, or sometimes the things we are afraid of. And sometimes we do remember those dreams when we wake up.

Having these little moments with children, and to actually watch them process so much information so rapidly as they learn about the great wide world and their place in it is a real joy to me. Thank you, dear nieces of mine,who share your little ones with me. I am blessed by it.

This poem is for Joshua. Never fear Joshua, you don’t need to be embarrassed when someone reads this to you, or even when you read it yourself  when you are older. It is not based on true fact. I just imagined it up, which is kind of like dreaming with our eyes open, where we get to decide what the pictures are going to be in our stories. You can do this too, as long as you tell people that it is a story. Because a story is just a story, a dream is just a dream, but

the truth is always the truth.

An Exciting Night At Grandma’s House

Last time I stayed at Grandma’s house,

Just before I said “Goodnight”

She patted my covers all over me,

Then she tucked them in real tight.

Right under my chin she doubled them up

And rolled them under my pillow;

She said “You know it gets cold at night

And you don’t want to get a chill –Oh!

Don’t forget to count some sheep!

And don’t let the bed bugs bite!”

And then she tip-toed out of the room

And turned out the bedroom light.

My arms were pinned down by my side

My feet were hemmed in too.

I felt just like a mummy must,

Or a pouched-in kangaroo.

That’s when I felt a little twinge!

Was that a bed bug’s pinch?

I tried to throw my covers off

But they wouldn’t give an inch!

And then I dreamed of Egypt

And a mighty pharaoh’s tomb—

Of being in a sarcophagus

In a dark and airless room.

I dreamed that my sarcophagus

Was loaded onto a plane;

I flew all the way to Australia

And was loaded onto a train—

Then suddenly the train derailed!

And I was thrown into a river—

A river so warm and peaceful and calm

That I didn’t even shiver.

Then grandma swam up with a joey

Who was free from his mummy’s pouch,

And they helped me to change into dry mummy wraps—

Then we all fell asleep on the couch!

Yes, I’m A Card Carrying Hoarder!

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imagesI have been busy reorganizing all my dresser drawers, closet shelves, and file drawers over the last few days, as a way of being productive with my time without A. Heating up the house by cooking or baking something  B. Going outside in the heat and humidity and risking a heat stoke   C. Spending any money.

The result is a large blue box of paper to bundle for recycling, a husband who is royally tired of left-overs, and a much enhanced appreciation for the people who love me, or at least care enough about me that they took the time to send me a card, or sometimes even a letter. I am about as far removed from a hoarder as Mother Teresa was from Imelda Marcos in their value systems. However, I dare not push it very far with that illustration, as I can be very un-Mother Teresa-like at times. This is something my husband, who is in the kitchen now, doing all the dishes from all the dibs and dabs I somehow assembled for him throughout the day and called meals. Offerings from containers, bowls, bins, and bags. Stuff that was as much about cleaning out the fridge as offering comfort. Some of it appeared, not only at the second, but again at the third meal today, until he practically had to cry “Uncle” to get me to say ” Just Pitch that!” I haven’t got the nerve to actually call them breakfast, lunch and supper, as they were just what happens when  I am on one of my reorganizing binges.

Some of you will likely be saying “Why isn’t he cooking his own meals, the lazy lout?” It’s because the man is just a working machine in the summer, and today he had to construct a large fenced in area for the growing ducks, weed a berry patch, and construct a hoop garden. Yesterday he hauled rocks and moved dirt for a drainage project which has totally messed up the back  yard near to the house and he is antsy to get that back to normal again, as quickly as possible. He has been a very patient man, especially as he could at times hear me at the kitchen table opening and closing a musical card with a weight- lifting chipmunk in it who was working out to the theme song from Rocky. After that there was the one with an Anniversary couple dancing to Rockin’ Around the Clock, over and over and over, every time I picked it up off my card pile again.

I just can’t help it. I’m a sucker for cards, and if you have ever sent me or given me one it is, in all likelihood, in a blue storage tote in my crawl space, or it has just now now been put with the rest of the stack that I gathered from all the places I reorganized today. These will  be placed in yet another tote. Yes, cards are my secret indulgence and always have been. I even have the first one Rolly ever gave me when we were began dating. It is covered with pink lipstick kiss marks. No, he didn’t!  I put them there myself to memorialize my first true love, and how I felt about him on the day I got his first romantic card.

I guess that makes me a hoarder then, but just a very tidy one, and in a very limited way. So, to my brother Keith, who used to call me up every time he watched the Hoarders show on TV, to my sibling who callously tormented me by saying he was holding a paper plate on a stick puppet with a picture of my face glued on it, in front of the hoarder’s face on TV every time she spoke: I can no longer deny it. All these cards are definitely becoming a problem! You should be much more compassionate now that you know the truth! Right?… I can hear your laughter now and it is not very nice!

I’m sure that no one will ever deny that cards do have their place;  they are a sweet way to let someone know that you are thinking of them. I defy anyone to just leave that pastel envelope with the butterfly sticker on the back of it unopened and just sitting there in there mail box every day for a week. That’s what happens to a lot of those Happy Birthday or Holiday Wishes you email people. Even if  Frosty does a little soft shoe shuffle across my screen, he’s not going to smell like the gingerbread cookies you were baking when you sent him to me to wish me a Merry Christmas. Your nice big red envelope with the green holly wreath sticker on it, on the other hand— if I open it ever so slowly and smell it, a little of your house’s naturally occurring  aroma therapy will enrich my day— in theory anyway.

Hey did you ever find the kids’  pet mouse yet? You might just want to check your Christmas card boxes.

I decided to add a little poem here just for the fun of it. I hope you enjoy it.

A Little Bit Of Luck

Once I found a four leaf clover—

Where the willow tree hangs over

All the stones that grandpa stacked there—

In the corner of the yard.

I thought that I should save it

So I ran inside and gave it

To my mother, who was writing out

Another get well card.

She said that she would press it

But she just forgot— I guess it

Was the rush of sending off

A card to grandpa on that day.

So the clover leaf was lost— we thought—

Or accidentally tossed— we thought—

Never to ‟bring a bit of luck”

As some folks like to say.

But then a few days after that

My grandpa called us just to chat,

And tell us he was better,

And he got our card that day.

And say “Thanks for sending over

That nice big four-leaf clover!

Whoever picked it for me

Sent a little luck my way!”

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The Angel Food Cake In Heaven

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imagesIn the large family that I grew up in there was always a very strong connection between food and comfort. I realize that experts in the health field tell us repeatedly that this is a very dangerous relationship for those who develop a deep dependency on food, using it as a form of pain dulling self medication. I am sure that the experts have a valid point, and are doing a public service to admonish us against such behaviour. I am glad that they are there to counsel those for whom this is a real problem, and to help them learn other better coping mechanisms.

But I for one am not going to advise against taking gifts of food to those who are hurting. Sometimes the significance of that kind of gesture is the thing that makes the difference between a very dark day and a manageable one. If the person you are considering giving a food gift to is on a low-fat or low-calorie diet, or you want to avoid the chocolate for their kids’ sake and still provide a baked treat then consider Angel Food Cake. I can make a really great one from scratch with the bounty of fresh eggs from our hens, but if I am in a pinch then I know that the Duncan Hines mix gives a really good result in record-breaking time. With a container of cut-up fruit, or berries, (even the frozen ones) you can provide a treat that is usually acceptable even to dieters.

Yes, I know that flowers and books are other good options, but the warmth that a nicely prepared casserole or a gift of fresh baking provides to someone who is grieving or emotionally in pain, somehow seem a little more like a hug than a handshake, and I guess I’m just one of those hugging kind of people.

The following poems were actually written to five of the most important women in my life in response to their kindness towards me during a time of grieving. 

To my Mom

My mother love me she always has,

At least as far as I know.

Did she ever have any second thoughts

About feeding me long ago?

About getting up at midnight,

When I was just a baby?

I don’t think I could say no for sure,

I guess I’ll just say maybe.

‘Cause it seems to me she’s been trying

To feed me ever since.

And my children too, and my husband.

She treats him like a prince—

Like the chicken dinner she brought us

It put a smile on my lips.

Some of it went into the fridge,

Some of it went to my hips.

If ever anyone’s saying

“Here comes dinner to the door.”

That’s my Mom and we dearly love her,

We couldn’t love her more.

To my sister Janice

Anything made by my sister’s hand

Would taste deliciously sweet

Though she may think that it’s boring or bland

To me it’s a gourmet treat.

She made me a cake on a very hard day.

“It’s only a mix.” she said,

But swallowed with tears

And a shared cup of tea,

It tasted like Heavenly bread.

Because she knows my heart so well

There was more love than sugar or spice,

So that even a crumb could have filled me up—

There was never a fullness so nice

To my sister Kathy

Meals that are made by my sister

Are warm and comforting things

Whether cabbage rolls or pork chops,

Or even chicken wings.

Whatever was on the menu

For Kathy and her spouse,

If anyone is hurting,

It goes to the sad one’s house.

Even if she and her husband

Eat cold cereal yet once more,

Because she left their dinner

At someone else’s door.

To my sister Marsha

You are there and always have been

For your sister tag-along.

You know me better than anyone;

We could finish each other’s song.

You bring me joy with all you do—

Each phone call, card, or cake—

Little do you realize,

The difference that you make.

You have made the difficult easier

In, oh, so many ways

You have been to me like sunshine

On some dark and stormy days.

To my sister Jeannie

Dearest sister who shares her heart

Whenever we are together,

And takes me out to her favourite haunts

For pastries as light as a feather,

And insists that she cannot possibly

Consume not a single bite

More than half of a mocha meringue:

Somehow it can’t be right

That you and I are sisters,

With your mandarin orange and tea,

Which you say has already filled you up

While you foist your pastries on me!

But then there’s the proof that we’re sisters

As we laugh together and cry

Over a plate of mocha meringues.

Don’t you know they’re supposed to stay dry?

I am so very blessed to have my amazing mother, and a beautiful daughter, as well as four sisters, and three sisters- in- law, nine nieces, and 5 great nieces.Two dozen very special women who mean so very much to me. Sadly two years ago I lost my husband’s Mum, Mina who was like another mother to me. Shortly after that we lost  my husband’s sister Rosalie, the mother and grandmother of some of those incredible nieces of mine. She was like a sister to me too, and I miss her every day. She was probably the most talented home baker I ever knew and even when she was quite ill herself she never neglected to send food gifts to her neighbours when they were lonely,grieving or unwell.

To my sister  Rosalie

Are you baking Angel Food cakes?

It wouldn’t surprise me a bit.

I’m sure there are feasts in Heaven

Where the meek and the lowly sit

Beside the strong and mighty,

And those with renown and fame.

And when you are slicing your cake up

You will portion it all the same,

Then you’ll pass the crystal cake plates,

To the diners one and all,

With the very best of your baking

In Heaven’s banquet hall.

Until I come to join you

Will you save a piece for me,

Of that shortbread you and Mom would make?

’Cause I’ve lost your recipe.

Love Yvonne

A Feast From The Garden Served Two Ways

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McGuinty affair and Summer Pics 096

Rolly, in the middle of our picket fence enclosed garden later in the season, a few years ago. All his composting really pays off.

What to do? What to do? My day is almost through.

I haven’t even started on another post for you

I’ve been so busy gardening, and cleaning up the place,

That I need to speed things up and accelerate my pace.

As I pour it out in verse it comes to mind so fast.

I think I’ll use that method; it’s worked well in the past.

I’d really like to garden and get those veggies growing.

It’s all that I can think of now; it’s really got me going.

The seeds of thoughts are planted now, and plant seeds planted to;

So this is what you’re getting— a veggie feast for you!

A Real Corny Poem

There are different kinds of kernels,

There’s a colonel and a kernel,

But only one would let you call him “yellow”.

Either one might blow up, when the heat is really on,

Though one would simply “pop!” the other bellow!!

I know this verse is corny, but its one that you’ll repeat,

(Unless the kernel’s stuck between your teeth!)

Beets Can’t Be Beat!

Pink, and crimson, white, and gold,

And even two-toned beets are sold

In market places here and there,

For they will grow most anywhere.

Their leafy tops are good to eat;

Their roots are delicious and somewhat sweet,

In salads, in pickles, or soup that’s pink!

“Beets can’t be beat!” that’s what I think!

Let’s All Hear It For The Pea!

Flat pods! Fat pods! Snappy and sweet!

Steamed or raw! A favourite treat!

Some people shell them before they sell them!

Some people sell them before they shell them!

Either way, they’re green and sweet!

Peas are a treat we love to eat!

Mmm! Turnips! Can You Dig It?

Turnips, turnips everywhere,

So don’t turn up your nose,

Just because their cooking

Doesn’t smell much like a rose.

A turnip can grow as big as your head,

And be just as stubborn too!

As you try to pull it out of the ground

To add to your grandma’s stew.

Ogrelicious

A snarly, gnarly looking root

A troll might cook in a rubber boot!

That’s how celeriac might look,

But it’s a treasure for the cook,

Who will use it in salad, soup, and stew,

And dishes delicious for trolls and for you!

 Gets Along Well With Others

The onion’s a vegetable socialite,

Welcomed by every appetite.

Quite bold alone, but good in groups!

A really good mixer in stews and soups!

But don’t share an onion on your very first date.

That’s one time for sure when you should wait!

Doctor’s Orders

If you’re making a salad that just needs some zip,

My good friend the salad chef gave me this tip

“Arugula’s great for its nice zesty flavour;

Its toothy green leaves have a taste that you’ll savour.”

My good friend the doctor who gives out advice free

Says “Make sure arugula’s all chopped up nicely,

Because if you choke when it’s stuck to your uvula,

It will be the last time that you eat arugula!”

I hope you enjoyed my little literary repast. Perhaps you can share it with the kids, if they are old enough to digest it.

Have a good one today!

Blessings, Yvonne

He Made Us Proud!

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Mom and Dad, with 7 of us kids. Number 8 is still just a glimmer in Dad's eye.

Mom and Dad, with 7 of us kids. Number 8 is still just a glimmer in Dad’s eye.

Today is the birthday of a real hero. He is my father William Peter Stephenson. He was born on June 7, 1925 and left this Earth on October 7, 2004. He was a modest man who didn’t ever think that he had accomplished very much with his life. Somehow, he always felt diminished by his lack of education because he was only able to go to school until grade 8. Because of the Great Depression most farmers were too dirt poor to board their children in town when necessary, so that they could attend high school.

It bothered all eight of us kids very much that he couldn’t appreciate in his own mind what a difference everything he had done, in and through his life, had made to those around him. Despite his own feelings of inadequacy, he was in fact quite well educated. He enjoyed reading the entire newspaper front to back daily whenever possible, The National Geographic and Time Magazine cover to cover, and watching the national news every night before bed. He could hold his own in any conversation, and had amazing math skills. I always felt proud to be in the presence of my father, at any social occasion, because he was an honest, honourable and loving man.

The following poem was written for my Dad for another reason, but I want to use it here as a tribute to his life. I am confident that I will see him again one day and when I do I want to tell him that I kept the promise I made when he passed away— to write for him.

To Dad,

Nobody could have ever loved us more than you did Dad

When I think of all the many things in life you could have had,

If you hadn’t always put us first and seen to all of our needs.

You will always be our hero Dad, because of your unsung deeds—

Putting shoes on sixteen feet not counting yours or Mom’s,

Paying at the counter for those dresses for our proms,

Putting more gas in every time you needed to move your car,

Even though we said we never drove it very far!

Paying for tonsillectomies before OHIP covered the cost,

Or glasses or retainers that some of us constantly lost.

Keeping our cupboards full of food, you worked so hard to be able

To provide a bounty for all of us, (and the neighbour kids at our table).

School clothes, class trips, insurance for driving boys,

Christmases unforgettable with special longed for toys

And keepsakes carefully crafted in secret late at night!

Your love for us seemed to have no end to its depth, its width, its height.

And so again on your birthday, we your family express our love.

To have you as our father was a special gift from above!

If you have a Dad, then even if things are difficult between you right now, make sure you make every effort to let him know you still love and  appreciate him. If you are blessed with a great relationship with your father, then surprise him and tell him before Fathers’ Day how much he means to you. It will be all the more meaningful for him because it is unexpected.

Count your blessings and have a wonderful day!

Yvonne