Rhymes for Reasons
Now I must complete the project by telling you a little bit about Dick Johnson, what his life has been and what it was that started him on the path that has led to this collection.
There have been interesting and unusual moments. For example, being selected as a member of the Byrd Expedition to the South Pole in 1947. They called it Operation Highjump. I doubt there are many of us left who can, referring to that moment in history, say… “I was there”.
Speaking of being there, I enjoyed working for many years as a radio and television sports announcer. That too was an interesting experience, made even more so by working with the “Glory Years” Green Bay Packers and Vince Lombardi. I also traveled with the Marquette University Basketball team as it was brought to national prominence by one of the most colorful men I’ve ever known, Al McGuire. These are treasured moments. They always will be. The one thing that I place above all else in my life is my family. The lady who has shared it all with me… the five children she gave me… the grandchildren we’ve been blessed with(We’re at five and counting). Nothing comes before them.
That was not always the case. Like many young men, I was, for a long time, concerned too much with my success, my career… with myself and what I wanted. Looking back, I know that the moment that concern with “self” ended represented my first step on the path that has led me to this place. There is no place I would rather be, so I’m very happy.
I am also more than a little awed by it all. I am a poet… and there is no one in the world who is more surprised by that than I am. I didn’t write my first poem until I was 50 years old. Before that time I’d never tried to write poetry… I’d never even read poetry.
It was all triggered by a terrible automobile accident I was involved in in which two people were killed. The horror of that experience set me on the path that I walk today. It turned my life around and forced me to look at myself and what I was. It helped me to find strength within myself I’d never before been able to imagine and an ability which, as I said earlier, never fails to amaze me.
Out of the shattered life of that other Dick Johnson has come the new Dick Johnson.
Although Dick Johnson has passed, his wife and family continue to inspire many with his meaningful poems.
Gifts & Garden