Submitted Date 05/25/2019

A little stumble, a step so small

She learned to walk and talk this Fall

She knows your voice better than your face

She knows you're far away - a better place.


You whisper to her, Daddy's here,

She reaches for her tickling ear.

No hands to catch her, no arms to cling,

But she hears your voice in everything.


She grows and changes and watches on

As daughters welcome their fathers home.

Her tears swell, salty and clear

Then she hears you whisper, Daddy's here.


Her first dance, her first car,

Her first date and broken heart,

You see it all through far-away eyes

Each time she needs you, each time she cries.


The days grow long, and the years grow short.

She's married now, a family of four.

Her children's father there, never alone.

What you'd wished for her, before yours called you home.


Your sacrifice was honorable, pure, and true.

But it wasn't just your own and cost more than only you.

So when I see a soldier, casket draped in our flag,

I think of his daughter, what she's lost and can't get back.


I wish for her, gratitude

From those you fought for

Honor and pride

She deserves that and more.


But most of all, in the midst of the noise,

I wish for her to hear your voice.

The comforting sound, the tickling ear.

The priceless words, Daddy's here.


- Dedicated to my father who fought in Vietnam and returned, to his fallen brothers in arms who did not return, and to the families they left behind. We will never fully know your sacrifice.



    Tanya Marion is the author of Tyne E. Tells, a fiction novel for 8 to 12-year-olds, and the founder of

Related Stories


Please login to post comments on this story