Archive for the ‘Music’ Category

Sorry, I missed a couple of birthdays this month. 

My Grandson, Eric, had a birthday on the 7th.



             ( ERIC)


My wonderful little Grandson

Is a very special boy

He’s dear and sweet and lovable

And he’s my pride and joy

He’s a handsome little fellow

With a dimple in his chin

Curly hair and big green eyes

And a most infectious grin


He’s like perpetual motion

From morning until night

His chatter is incessant

Clever and bright

He has love of music

And a sense of rhythm, too

He creates his own dances

I swear to you, it’s true


With his own interpretations

He’s graceful on his feet

And he also does hand-dances

Perfection in each beat

I think his career is certain

It’s Choreography!

Or maybe he’ll be a Maestro

Of a great symphony


You couldn’t match his attributes

No matter how you’d try

And I have fallen in love with

This precious little guy

I thought my heart was quite full

But I was very wrong

There was a special place just waiting

For Eric to come along



8/6/8)          Phyllis DeWitt-VanVleck

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Tighten up those fiddle strings,        

Loosen up that bow.

Tap your foot to keep the time,

And pluck that old banjo.


Thump the big bull-fiddle

Tease that mandolin,

Add some strumming from guitars,

So dancing will begin.


Play some lively get down tunes,

To get them on the floor,

And don’t forget some mood sets,

So they’ll start yelling, MORE!.


Fill the room with country music.

Have a gent and lady sing. 

Let the floor fill up with dancers

Promenading ‘round the ring.


The music is delightful –

Square dance, line dance, waltz,

And for the sweethearts in the crowd,

A bit of good old shmaltz.


The choice of stringed instruments

Has made a perfect blend,

Truly pleasing everyone …

But that is country trend.


8/3/05      Phyllis DeWitt-VanVleck

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He built his own guitar




When he was in his early teens

          With music in his soul

He little knew his first guitar

          Would stir in him, a goal

He found an old guitar one day

          Which he then built anew

He learned to play it with finesse

          And as his talents grew

He dreamt of hearing perfect tone

          He’d not be satisfied

Until he built his own guitar

          Or at least, until he tried

Pictured in his fertile mind

          Was perfect grain and tone

The best guitar that could be made

          And it would be his own

And he succeeded masterfully

          But could not stop at one

He’s dedicated to his craft

          With pride in each one done

And so he’s called Guitar Man

          He takes a piece of wood

And brings to life an instrument

          That’s incredibly good

Selecting only the finest wood

          Favoring what is rare

He lovingly shapes its contour

          Working with utmost care

He breathes new life into the wood

          With efforts to enhance

The natural pattern in the grain

          No detail left to chance

He sands, inlays, and polishes

          And last, he adds the strings

Then when he plays his masterpiece

          That guitar really sings

Musicians covet his guitars

          And come from near and far

To look at his exquisite work

          And buy a fine guitar


1/20/89    Phyllis DeWitt VanVleck


Written for Ed (my brother)

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I know my hair has turned snow-white,

And I walk rather slow.

I know that I’m forgettin’ things

You think that I should know.                                                         


I do get rather grumpy now.                                                   

Well, just a tiny touch.                                                  

Yes, wrinkles decorate my face,                                             

And weight’s a bit too much.                                                 


But I want to advocate right now,                       

T.V. needs cleanin’ up – – –

You think I’m harking back to days

They used a mustache cup.


I loath what’s rap, both song and dance,

With  tunes that can’t be sung.

And potty–mouths and disrespect,

Now coming from the young.


If we used words  like kids today,

For us there was no hope – –

Since Mom marched us in the house

And washed our mouths with soap.


In every form of programed fare,

Breast-bulge and bare backside                    

Jiggle and wiggle and “flash” us all,

And the men are goggle-eyed.                    


Now, I’m not sayin’ it’s ugly,

But in case you didn’t know,

We had those things from Eve to now,

But we didn’t let ‘em show.  



9/24/06      Phyllis DeWitt-VanVleck

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In honor of my brother, Ed




There were mandolins and banjos

And guitars that he had played

But what he loved the best of all

Was a violin he’d made


His craftsmanship was perfect

He played them all with skill

Music filled his heart with joy

But now those strings are still


The violin lies silently

In its case upon a shelf

I’d take it out and make it sing

If I had his skill myself


But no one made it sing like him

The melodies so sweet

His bow caressed the strings with love

But the memory’s bittersweet


For he has gone where Angels sing

His music left behind

Yet, I still hear those sweet refrains

But only in my mind


Phyllis DeWitt-VanVleck        7/1/03

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Memories of our old farmhouse,

Upon a wooded hill,

And Thanksgiving dinners there,

Linger with me still.

Our family numbered nine back then

But our table seated more,

For we made room for extra guests . . .

Ours was an open door.


Around our huge oak table,

We each pulled up a chair.

Then Mama said the blessing

As we bowed heads in prayer.

Our table wasn’t fancy,

For nothing ever matched . . .

Odds and ends of tableware

And a cloth that was patched.


We drank from pretty jelly jars,

Each different in design.

We didn’t need fine crystal;

We liked our jars just fine.

When we were short of dishes,

We’d use some old cake tins.

We called them plates with sideboards

They always brought on grins.


Our garden supplied our table.

Mom’s canning gave us more.

And we were rich in happiness

With wonderful rapport.

Aromas in the old farm house

Foretold great things to eat,

For everything that Mama served

Was welcomed as a treat


There were platters of baked chicken,

Roasted to a turn,

And warm slabs of home baked bread,

With butter I helped churn;

There were mounds of mashed potatoes,

Green-beans, corn, and peas;

Dressing baked with chicken bits;

And cranberries cooked to please.


Brown gravy made from giblets,

Golden candied yams,

Pumpkin, peach, and apple pies,

And homemade harvest jams;

Big cups of steaming coffee

And milk from our own cow;

Tasty home-bottled root beer . . .

I wish I had some now.


After dinner was over,

Dad played his violin.

My brother played his old guitar.

A guest played mandolin.

Then other members of Dad’s band,

With their families in tow,

Dropped by for pie and coffee . . .

And to practice for their show.


That old house rang with laughter,

And music filled the air.

The women discussed recipes,

And kids ran everywhere.

But the best part of Thanksgiving

Was the way that we all cared,

And the love that filled our old house . . .

The best thing that we shared.


11/16/88 – Phyllis DeWitt-VanVleck

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