A Boy's First Rifle - Poem by Dwight Burgess
As a man dug through his closet, clear back in the back on the floor,
Was an item that stirred his memory of a birthday many years before.
He remembered tearing at the wrappings and how a tear he had to strife,
As he quickly removed all the paper to reveal his very first rifle.
He remembered his thoughts and feelings at the sight of that first gun.
He could picture the card and message, that read, "with love to my son."
He thought of the crisp Fall mornings and the wonderful times outside.
When Dad and he went hunting, of the love, the joy, and the pride.
He remembered his years in the grades, in Fall when the weather was cool.
And how he'd grab that old rifle as soon as he came home from school.
Then during his years in high school, with homework, girls, and sports,
It seemed like his time with his Dad was cut to not much but reports.
Then he spent four years at the university, that seemed to widen the gap.
And as he sat there reminiscing, a tear fell on the old gun on his lap.
Then came marriage and a family and the miles brought them farther apart.
As he called these things to his memory, something sure tugged at his heart.
He walked to his eight-year-old's bedroom and handed the gun to his boy.
He was overcome by emotions again when he saw the lad's look of joy.
He knew he must carry on the tradition and take his son hunting too.
He knew he must also make a phone call as a thank you was long overdue.
With his arm around his eight-year-old, together they walked to the den.
Together they raised the receiver as they dialed a number and then,
He impatiently awaited the ringing and although the connection was bad.
His heart jumped at the answer, he cried, "Hi how ya doin' there Dad?
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