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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: birthday (05/23/05)

TITLE: Poppy's Birthday
By Paul Potenza


Poppy’s Birthday

I just had an idea and I wanted to write it down while it was still fresh in my mind...Poppy’s birthday is tomorrow and I wanted to give him something that’s distinctly mine...Here it is...

“F” - F is for “Friend”. I can’t think of ANYONE that I’d rather call that word. He’s there for me when I’m happy, sad, grateful, angry and anywhere else that I happen to be. He’s also there geographically. There is no doubt in my mind that if I needed him for anything, he’d be there.

“A” - A is for “Always”. It means EXACTLY what it says. Some people say “always” but when the rubber hits the road they qualify. “It’s too hot.” - “It’s too cold.” “I didn’t mean now.” There’s NO doubt that if I called him—He’d be HERE.

“T” - T is for “Tender”... also “Tough”. Pop has an unbelievable gift to be both when he needs to be...often simultaneously. When you have a son who’s strung out on drugs or alcohol and you need to make the tough call, there’s not a man alive who’s better at it. When you have a newborn baby that needs to be rocked or sung to...Ditto.

“H” - H is for “Harmony”...also “Home” both of which we received in spades. Two examples. He helped build our home with his hands - BOTH times!!! Then he took the house and made it a HOME. Someplace that felt warm and secure, where none of the boogeymen could get you. The house always felt complete when I could grab on to his leg when he came home at night and ride it up the driveway with at least four other brothers clinging to his back - both arms - and the other leg. Harmony, of course came from the music he sings while washing the dishes with us at night. (There is of course only ONE type of music - Barbershop!!!) Rock and Roll is merely Satan passing Gas.

“E” - E is for “Eternity”...Pop gave me the greatest gift he could ever give. An appreciation of his “Heavenly Pop”. If that sounds sacrilegious , bear in mind that the apostle in the new testament refers to approaching God our Father and calling him “Abba” which is the Greek/Hebrew version of “Daddy”. We all need something like that don’t we? A Pop that will always be there and never hurt us.

“R” - R is for “Real”...One thing that you have to say about the guy is that he is for real. So often these days I run into people who seem to be real and then, when the chips are down they turn out to be phonies. I’ll grant you that I didn’t always agree with what he said...I still don’t...but I can count on him giving me the straight scoop as he sees it. Some men are too cowardly to give you a straight answer. They fear that you won’t like them if you tell it like you see it. Pop doesn’t fall into that trap.

I could go on all night...I originally thought about going through the entire alphabet which would be easy to do but I’ll leave that for you to explore. I’ll bet you won’t have any trouble with it.

Happy Birthday Pop...Some things have happened recently that reminded me that I had and will always have the best father short of God. If that makes you uncomfortable, I understand. I know that putting you in that league is high praise. After all you’re a man. But I hope that you understand that thinking of you, helps me understand how much God loves me.

Happy Birthday.


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This article has been read 740 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Delores McCarter05/30/05
What can I say but "WOW!" This piece floored me. I loved two parts in particular
"Rock and Roll is merely Satan passing Gas." was a hoot! Your last pararaph got me right in the gut. Well done, my friend, well done!
Phyllis Inniss05/30/05
Lovely tribute to your father and a genuine birthday wish. I also like the very last line.
darlene hight05/31/05
This is a wonderful entry and I expect that it is written to a wonderful man. Thanks for sharing it.
Jack Zachary06/01/05
Very touching tribute to a great FATHER...also liked how you said that thinking about him helps you undertand how much God loves you. never heard it put that way, but it's so true. thank you
Debbie OConnor06/03/05
Outstanding writing. Friend, you are no beginner. I'll be reading you in Advanced shortly. Rock and roll is just Satan passing gas! LOL! :) Couldn't disagree more, but oh so funny. Love the ending! Every Christian parent hopes their parenting reflects God's love to their child.
Joanne Malley06/04/05
What a tribute to a special dad! Thanks for sharing him with us.
Marilyn Schnepp 09/23/06
Beautiful tribute to your Father, Dad or Pop.
I quote from one of my poems:

"God knew the value
And also the worth,
Of giving us "fathers"
Down here on Earth!"

Great job. Loved every word!