Lessons from Dad's Baseball Games

Today is the day my dad went to be with the Lord eleven years ago.  I miss him, but I can still see his twinkling eyes as he fashioned something out of nothing.  That was his life.

Lessons from Baseball

My father loved to play baseball,
And on Sunday afternoons
We would file out one and all
Ditching paper with cartoons.

We’d head off to our big backyard
With a Wiffle ball and bat
And even though he could not play,
Along came George, our cat.

The stately elm was our first base
Apple trees would make two more
The plum tree was the perfect spot
For the youngest's on-base chore

The plum tree spot was tucked away
Behind grapevine home plate
Where you could still be in the game
But safely watch and wait.

When we were very young and small
We’d get to swing and swing
He wouldn’t let us quit or stop
Till the plastic bat would ring

We always got a hit off Dad
From tree to tree we’d run
You might get tagged and make an out
But the running made it fun.

As we grew up and moved away
And found someone to marry
We’d still come home for our at bat,
Though base and team would vary.

With energy the baseball games
Were eagerly played anew,
Each soul would take a special place
As our young families grew.

When apple trees were hard to find
And Dutch Elm took first base
Still we could play the family game
Any time and any place

A Frisbee or a heel of bread
As targets for our feet
A vacuum cleaner tube for bat,
Rolled sock for baseball - sweet!

We learned you'd never go without
As long as you could see
Potential in the little things
Nudged to be what they could be.

I try to live by Dad’s wise ways
Whether bread or apple tree
I’m blessed to have the life I have
And that is all I need.

Love you, Dad!
©2012, Donna JT Smith


  1. I wish I had family memories like that, but we never had anything like that that we did.

    1. Ah, but it's never too late to start! I don't think my dad did either.

  2. It brings tears Donna. My family played many games of softball at our cabin, someone always ending up in the swampy land nearby. And growing up, it was whiffle ball too because we didn't have a big enough yard. You made me look back on so many happy times... I love the way you grew up with this too, carrying on what your dad started. It is simply wonderful.

    1. Don't you wish everyone could have family games? Even though we complained sometimes about leaving what we were doing to go play ball, we always enjoyed the games together.

  3. Donna, What a joyful and beautiful tribute to your father. I love how he had you keep swinging no matter what and all of the different things you used as bases. Surely this all contributed to how grateful and resourceful you clearly are now. a.

    1. Dad was resourceful, for sure! We always had different equipment or rules when we played games together...no two games were alike!

  4. A lovely tribute, Donna! I like picturing your cat coming along, too :-)

    And one of my favorite bits was this:

    We learned you never go without
    As long as you can see
    Potential in the little things
    Nudged to be what they could be.

    1. George was always in the middle of things!
      Someday maybe I'll write some more ways Dad made life interesting!

  5. I must have been meant to read this today! I got here from another blog....from another blog...I moved to Maine recently, so was intrigued by the title of your blog. My dad passed 4 years ago. He was much like your dad, lucky me! And lucky you. Thank you for sharing and for the positive focus. I think my dad would say thank you as well :)
    Write on!

    1. Oh, I'm so glad you stopped by! And welcome to Maine! Stop back and visit again real soon

  6. What a beautiful tribute to your father. Simply heartwarming.

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