Remembering Daddy on Father’s Day 2014

Walter Baker, Tammy & Greg 1958  -1

My dad, Walter Baker, in this picture, is showing new kittens to my children, Tammy and Greg. Daddy was a kind and loving father, who was proud of his seven children and all his grandchildren. He and Mama gave us a wonderful home life, a secure childhood, and instilled in us a love for God, family and country. I’ll always be thankful for my daddy.

Daddy’s Felt Hat
The hat of felt my daddy wore was bent
around the edges of its sweat-soaked brim;
my daddy wore it everywhere he went.
I keep it now in memory of him.
Inside a box it sits on closet shelf.
I often think I should discard it now,
and yet I simply cannot bring myself
to throw away the hat he wore to plow.
My daddy’s strength, his heart, his steel-blue eyes
made straight my path and edged my walk with pride
and gave me hope beneath bright sun-filled skies,
gray-dimmed and damp the day my daddy died.
The hat of rich worn felt looks out-of-place
away from daddy’s deep-lined, humble face.

Copyright 2012, Freeda Baker Nichols

Where’s the Cat?

DSC_0021 -3 BWaiting  for a snack
while I rest upon this mat.
The man who lives here
knows where I am at.
He is not my master–
I am his grandson’s cat.

His grandson lives next door,
and I think that is neat!
After working in his garden,
the grandpa went inside to eat.
I’m waiting here because I know
he’ll bring me back a treat.

© 2013, Freeda Baker Nichols

Clean House

English: Partly black and white icon of broom ...

January swept in
after the holidays,
like dust
in front of a broom–
gray, cold, swirling.

Vacuum screamed.
I removed a sock.
Bubbie’s. He’d looked
for it before he left.
“Never keeps up with
anything,” his mother

Careful how you scold,
I wanted to caution my
but kept silent.

Found a spoon
Bubbie’s little sister
hid in the Mother-in-law’s
Tongue with half a

I fluffed the pillows,
swiped the table
with Pledge, replaced
a doily and candy dish.

Remembered my son
at Bubbie’s age, and . . .
later on, how handsome
he looked in uniform,
green beret covering
his military style
crew cut.

Memories swept in
gray, cold, swirling.

©Copyright, 2013,  Freeda Baker Nichols