He was a farm boy
Eighth grade education
polio victim, one leg shorter
F4 for World War
product of German immigrants’
second generation

Not a gambler or a smoker
confirmed teetotaler
Never played a note of music
never owned a gun
or fishing rod
read the paper every day

Pet walker, shrub trimmer
a genius Mister Fixit
anything with mechanical parts
A master with a movie camera

He could take a splinter
from my finger
Mercurochrome my knee scrape
in the quickest painless way

With his golden mellow voice
he read my bedtime story
like James Earl Jones
But most of all I loved
to hear him sing like Bing*

*Bing Crosby

-Sue Neufarth Howard