While moving may be a hopeful, often stressful experience for most people, Mark Driesbach's move from Jim Thorpe to Lehighton unveiled a revelation.
"I was sorting through boxes so not to take unnecessary stuff," Driesbach explained, "Inside a tote, there was a postcard. It was dated June 8, 1989. It was from my father, about a year before he passed away."
Driesbach, a poet, was both touched and inspired to create From Postcards To Memories, a book of his poems. His first poem, A Son's Prayer, begins,
"Though he may be far away from me
My father is never too far to listen
To silent words issued in a prayer
Things he has missed, all the stories
Told about him in the best of ways
Laughter and tears and regrets too
That he might not be there for those
Moments, that have yet to come to me
But he is there in spirit somehow I know He watches over me, still loves me too As much as I have loved him in my life..."
"I started the book with A Son's Prayer-it was a Father's Day poem and a way to help remember him. For his sister and, "For any daughter who has lost their father too soon in life," Driesbach wrote The Daughter's Prayer:
"He held me when I first came into the world
And wrapped his arms around me tightly
Whispering a silent prayer to me alone
He would always protect me from harm
He told me once how I grabbed his finger
Smiling that connection would never break
He pushed me on my bike and never let go
Until I was ready, but he was never ready..."
Driesbach, who is no stranger to life and health issues, finds himself acutely sensitive to others who are hurting. When a friend lost his son, he asked himself, "How do anyone deal with something like that? How can anyone find the words?"
"While I can't speak the words, I can write them. I wrote a poem dedicated to his son." It appeared in his last book of poems, a children's bedtime book, Bugs and Bedtime. Another poem was for a little girl in chemotherapy and looking to get a Moxie Girlz True Hope doll, a doll similar to a Barbie, but hairless.
Driesbach's first book, Bugs At Bedtime & Other Adventures was released in June 2013 and sold by Amazon and locally. He was surprised at sales of 100 copies locally in just four months.
He attributes this to both a network of friends and supporters and that the book fulfills a need for children to explore the creepy crawly aspects of nature while discovering poetry and sharing the experience with their parents in the comfort of their bedroom.
With From Postcards To Memories, Driesbach shift's to adult themes, often themes reflecting memories. "Like reading a faded postcard, you can hear a song on the radio-it instantly clicks in your head, and the best memories dance in your head. When I hear Willie Nelson or Waylon Jennings, I think of my father because we used to listen to country music when we would go for a ride.
"Poetry is my way of helping people. I know there are times that even a poet or writer has trouble finding the right words. Friends have gone through stuff-good and bad-and they needed something to help them through it.
"I try to write poems that show others that they aren't alone, poetry that touches people, not just talks to them. While a poem may be dedicated to one specific person, it is meant for everyone."
Mark Driesbach's From Postcards To Memories will be available at the Mauch Chunk 5 & 10 in Jim Thorpe, and online at Amazon, or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.