Monthly Archives: August 2012

Tennessee Sparrow

A Tennessee Sparrow in the trees
Singing her sweet melodies
Loving life’s memories
Little things like these

A coal miner’s daughter
Cold nights, laying next to Mama,
Papa’s drillin’ holes
in the deep belows
Only the Moon knows – her drama

And on she grew
while life circled her feet
The Moon came too
Made her love complete

Now a child rests her head
Listens to the sparrow sing
A song of Life, she said,
“My Mama’s everything…”

Heavens Gates: Open!
Release the doves!
Life’s not about her
It’s about who she loves

So when you hear the sparrows’ song
and you feel like singing along
and your heart feels like it belongs
To a Tennessee so strong…

Love her.
For that is what she is.

The Pipes Are Calling

Too many police officers are killed every year. It never really seems to hit home if you don’t know the deceased, or his family, or of his dedication to life and country. The most recent figures I found report that on average one police officer is shot or killed every 53 hours in the United States. In using those figures I estimate that 3,955 officers were shot or killed since I joined the law enforcement community in 1988. But I don’t know 3,949 of them. This following piece of my heart is dedicated to the six that I do know…

An adaptation of Danny Boy…….
I humbly offer this recording as a means to understand the intended cadence of this song. Please forgive my tone deafness. I’m not a professional singer and I can’t afford to hire one… I hope you will find what I do here…… Thank you for stopping by my blog…

The pipes are calling, Danny boy….
the pipes are calling — my friend.
The pipes will bring the summer rain
and then they’ll bring the end……

A life so lost in loving hearts,
A life so lost, but true….
Could a man be happier
If that man were you……

A badge should always shield your light
lest he who tremors bold
should come upon a summer night
and lay your body cold.

So hear me Danny boy my friend,
This village from glen to glen
Hoorah’s up the mountainside
We’ll love you to the end….

We’ll Love you to the end….

Puddles Ago

Jumpity Jump!  Slappity Slap!
Yellow coats and rubbers!
Puddle fun has just begun
and my boots are buckle uppers!

Crisp blue lines of a paper boat
listing toward the drain….
A great white sail like a great white whale
under the pouring rain.

A boy at four, a boy at five,
at boy at seventeen….
Puddle fun’s for everyone
Come see what I mean!

Tie your hat strings under your chin,
Raise your feet and splash them down…
Proclaim the world with a great big grin
The King of Seas has just been crowned!

Oh, how she sailed the length of ever
down that distant gutter of my boyhood home.
Never before was a boat so clever
Sailing to where my heart shall always roam…..

For as to second childhood I
Draw gently near,
With happy heart I see the why
Children are dear.

Second Childhood by Robert William Service

© 2012 John Richter


Follies Gone

I had the pleasure recently of watching a documentary written by Bill O’Reilly and narrated by Tom Hanks, titled Killing Lincoln.  O’Reilly made a point of showing Lincoln walking through the streets of a decimated Richmond – once capital of the great confederacy.  Lincoln sat at the desk of Jefferson Davis, who had fled the city only hours before.  From that desk he was asked about the nature of attack against the still fleeing rebel soldiers, who were worn and torn and completely without any resources.   They could have been killed like fish in a barrel.  As for the general sentiment at the time I’m certain that would have been a most fitting end to them.  But that wasn’t Lincoln’s assessment, which is why I believe he is the greatest man who probably ever lived.  I applaud Mr. O’Reilly for bringing this side of Lincoln to light.

Follies Gone

Who shall stand behind her bars and stars?
Who shall fight for Master Robert?
Wrapped in her crimson grasp he cries
“Old Glory never dies!”

Richmond lays in waste,
the path of hunger flows
over hills and valleys low.
But nothing soothes disgrace
or the damned deafening blows
Lee’s army has come to know…

Lincoln sits upon Davis’ throne,
awash in rubble and fear.
Grasping victory clearly alone
in a city full of tears.

And Captain of the Guard should ask
“How to handle the Rebs?”
Lincoln gave that solemn look
and without hesitance said:

We have wrought this terrible war
to settle a more terrible score.
Our valiant brothers in arms
have fled to field and farms.
Lest their honor shed a single tear
or bloodshed last another year,
bring their souls some hopeful cheer,
allow their cause and hearts be near,
let God and all countrymen hear,
that life and brotherhood are so dear.

With that he sat and sighed,
a great turmoil did subside.
Other men think we are all tied
but Lincoln knew deep inside…

That solitude joins each man’s path.
And so too does brotherhood.

“Let up on them, Captain.
Let up on them”

I have always found that mercy bears richer fruits than strict justice.

Abraham Lincoln


© 2012 John Richter

Quiet Little Pen

A quiet little pen, she be.
Glistening above her fountain.
With thoughts from ocean depths
to the peaks of soaring mountains.

And who am I? A robber of sorts,
to spill her ink alive….
That her breath and heart might fancy
something that I contrived…

Nay, not today I say,
nothing in my words of glory
could capture the boldness
of her very solemn story.

But might our hearts merge?
When finger touches quill?
Might the scenes of Heaven
be etched on parchment still?

Nay, not today I say.
Her blood is black
and her heart so cold.

Heaven waits another day.
For her story is yet untold.

Quiet little pen.

For all sad words of tongue and pen, The saddest are these, ‘It might have been’.

                                                                                              John Greenleaf Whittier

© 2013 John Richter

Frozen Tears

It was just a small corner…..
a tear fell upon its shine.
Her coffin gleamed the winter warmer
on this coldest day of mine.
Her breadth was not a burden,
Mother never was.
Her life ended so sudden,
and off to Heaven because…
I don’t know…..
But I listened to the priest,
though I can’t remember his face.
Eternal bliss and happiness,
and always a better place.
And while his words ran me through,
as the sun and snow played peek-a-boo,
and angels sang their chorus too,
life’s beginning began anew….
I found my gaze upon that tear,
it suddenly became quite clear:
Now frozen solid against her cask
just a mar within life’s new task.
That I should live for her,
and her for our tears.
And as love may ever occur,
She shines through out the years…