Monday, May 30, 2011


The following is a poem my dad wrote and dedicated to my Grandpa ("Pop") for his 85th birthday and the 60th anniversary of his B-17 being shot down over the Baltic Sea on June 13, 1943. To read more about my Grandpa's story, read this.

Silken parachutes of milkweed plants
That grew on canal banks
Near a childhood home
Wafted about on gentle breezes
Catching a young boy's fancy.

He was told there was great purpose here:
In the autumn of the year
The milkweed pods wold swell, then burst,
Sending forth by hundreds their precious cargo:
Seeds to perpetuate the next generation.
Borne on winds of hope,
Secured to delicate wings
Trusting that a single one would safely land,
Find root, and bring forth fruit.

A world away and in a different time
It was a season of war,
A struggle for the perpetuation
Of the next generation of free men.

Men sent forth as seeds in pods of metal
Borne on air and on water,
Bearing the hopes of nations, families
And those who loved liberty everywhere;
Trusting that their single seed would safely land,
Find root, and bring forth fruit.

A silken parachute descending from a battle sky
Alone, companionless,
Caught by a contrary blessing wind
Carried to a safe landing place
Of shallow earth.

Not a favored piece of ground;
Just sufficient to cling to life
Amid the choking weeds competing for the light,
Found root and strengthened by adversity
Brought forth fruit abundantly,
Even an hundred fold.

Silken parachutes of milkweed plant:
Never will I look upon thee with boyish eyes
But with vision altered by experience
Of life lessons taught in nature's realm
That testify of God's hand in the affairs of man.

1 comment:

Liz said...

I didn't know your dad was such a poet! This was beautiful to read. Thanks for sharing.