In keeping with my mother’s observation about my father, i once again am acting like “a worm in hot ashes.” This is a project started long ago, put into a rough book form for my grandson, Samuel James Jewell Gander (just to make sure there is no confusion, once again i point out Sam’s two middle names are for his great grandfather, not his grandfather, and that makes me very happy and proud). My younger daughter Sarah provided the illustrations in that book and it is her illustrations accompanying the writing included in this “Willie Nod” section of my website.
i now intend to post one of these at least once a week until they are all here. Eventually, i hope to turn them into a book for publication.
They began when i wrote the first one for my daughter Blythe, Sam’s mother, when she was six-years old. It was April 1978. As i recall, i was returning from a trip to Norfolk to meet Captain Stark and planning to served as his Assistant Officer In Charge (AOIC) for the one-week Surface Warfare phase of the NROTC midshipman summer training program. i would have six weeks of this training as Temporary Additional Duty (TAD) from my position as Associate Professor (can you believe that?), Senior Naval Officer of the NROTC Unit at Texas A&M University. The divorce from Blythe’s mother was almost final. i knew my role i relished as a live-in father for Blythe was ending, and i would be gone from her for long periods of time.
Anyway (which my mother said a lot because she was always thinking of something else while talking about something and would signal returning to her subject with “anyway” or rarely “any how), it was on the flight leg from Greenville, North Carolina to Nashville, stopping by my parents’ home in Lebanon before returning to College Station. i was trying to think of something to write, a theme to continue when i was really away from Blythe for long periods. i looked out my port hole and thought of flying on a bird. i wrote the first Willie Nod poem.
i wrote quite a few more for Blythe, then Sarah, and maybe one or two for Sam.
i wish to point out the poems are under my copyright and the illustrations are under Sarah’s copyright.
i hope you enjoy them.
Here is Sarah’s first and second renditions of Willie Nod.
Sarah’s second rendition of Willie Nod.
Copyright Sarah May Jewell, 2017