Irwin’s Dad

I remember Irwin’s Dad
Drafted to war in Vietnam
And never came back.

But a coffin came draped in a flag
And all the tears his mother cried
Meant Irwin’s life had changed.

Irwin smiled at the stories I told
He was always the first to laugh
At my marionette dancing on stage.

Irwin was just four, his mother’s joy,
Me not much older but oh, I knew
He would always miss his Dad.

If you see a veteran today, remember
There’s an Irwin’s Dad they sorrow o’er
And a son like Irwin too.


On this Veteran’s Day, 11/11/2021, thank you to all the veterans who served our country!

For image attribution and a history of Veteran’s Day, click here.

21 thoughts on “Irwin’s Dad

  1. Freedom is not free! Nathan is retired Army and whenever he talks with new members of the military he shares with them how they wear the uniform for those who have gone before them. To anyone who served reading this comment, “thank you for your sacrifice. Thank you for your service.” Thank you Dora for this poem! It pulls at the heartstrings!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. “Freedom is not free!” We forget that truth to our peril. The soldier’s uniform isn’t glamorous but it’s honorable only because, as Nathan says, of those who have worn it in the past, sacrificially, heroically. We don’t need to make idols of them, but we need to remember them and the freedoms they fought for. Lest we lose not only our freedoms but our honor too. Blessings to you and Nathan on this Veteran’s Day, Mandy, and thank him for his service for me.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Freedom taken as a given is erroneous for freedom is NOT free. And no matter who we are we need to express thanks & giving to those who afford us the freedoms we have.
    It takes a special kind of human to do what those veterans did and I can see how the uniform is a great symbol for that which is not free.
    My heart swells on days like these. So much to be grateful for.
    Dora, Your short poem is so tender. Touches every hardened place. This homage is for all the Irwins who had no choice but to grow up without Dads. But surely that couldn’t have been easy. And his Dad— hero! Always and forever will be. Blessings to ALL on this Veteran’s Day and everyday we get to see someone ‘wearing’ the uniform with honor.
    Thanks for sharing this. Tweeting it. 💕

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for your generous response, Selma. There’s not a word of your homage to veterans that I’m not in wholehearted concert with. They deserve every word and deed of thanks we can afford them for the defense of freedoms we take so lightly, though maybe not so much as we used to as we see their erosion lately.

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  3. I just wrote a heartfelt response here Dora and Im ticked because it disappeared…
    >> this homage is for all the Irwins who had no choice but to grow up without Dads— surely that couldn’t have been easy. And his Dad— hero! Always and forever will be. Blessings to ALL on this Veteran’s Day and everyday.
    Thanks for this tender poem dear, Dora. Squeezed my heart. xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thanks Dora for reminding us of the sacrifice every veteran’s family makes during their time of service as well as when most return home. My mother was four years old when her father went to serve in the army during World War II. He wouldn’t return for three years.

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    1. It’s my honor. I know those years without her Dad must have left a huge hole in her heart. We can never stop thanking veterans like your grandfather and their families for their sacrifices, paying the price for freedoms we possess in security, for now.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. No doubt about it. Praying for you and church tomorrow: may God be pleased to send His anointing Spirit upon you and all who preach and hear the Gospel preached, that they may know the power of God unto salvation.🙏✝️

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