|Vanilla "Custard" with strawberries, related stories and recipes below|
Sunday, June 19, 2011
Dad I Remember: A Father's Dad Poem for Foodies
For father’s day I decided to share a foodie excerpt from I poem I wrote for my Father in September of 2007. He had just been diagnosed with terminal cancer and so many memories overwhelmed me as road the train from work to see him at Sloan Kettering Hospital in New York City. My father asked me to speak at his memorial service. Despite being professional speaker, that served as one of the most difficult talks I have ever given This is part of what I shared on that day in April of 2008. Happy Father’s day:
Dad I Remember
Frederick Douglass Opie, September 2007
Dad I remember once we subdued the weeds and poison-ivy in our yard how you and I played catch with my first baseball mitt. How proud you were watching me and Marshall compete on our village’s minor and little league teams. How ecstatic you were at the news that I made the all-star team and how disappointed you first were when I abandoned baseball for lacrosse. I remember how you helped me get over the insecurity I felt when people laughed at how pigeon toed I was and still am. You shared with me that one of the greatest athletes of whole time, your hero Jackie Robinson, ran with a similar gate. Dad, that really helped me as I struggled with being so different and so many ways from my white peers in such a white town.
Dad I remember how hard you worked to provide for your family, to give us opportunities that you never had as a child. I remember the academic tests and tutors you worked overtime to pay for and the camps and leagues you paid for. I remember the camping trips and the car rides to the base of Bear Mountain to buy “custard.” You were the only one I knew who called soft serve ice cream by that term.
Dad I remember that you were very well read and a gifted oral historian. As I compose this poem I do so to share with you and others all the great memories that you have given me. The way you faced your final days with such dignity and acceptance is truly amazing. I know the last dozen or more years of your life have not been easy and that you endured allot of pain. But Dad thanks for sticking around as long as you did and sharing yourself with me. As Bob Hope sang, Dad, thanks for the memories.
My Dad and Food stories below:
Going for Custard with my Dad: http://frederickdouglassopie.blogspot.com/2009/08/custard.html
My Dad, Frank’s Fuel, and Food: http://frederickdouglassopie.blogspot.com/2010/09/hispanic-history-month-and-foodways_19.html
My Dad and the Great Depression: http://frederickdouglassopie.blogspot.com/2010/11/thanksgiving-day-series-thanks-for-acts.html