I’m not an expert on poetry by any means. Let’s be clear about that.
So when reader Kathy Tiberi of the Rolling Rock Club in Ligonier sent me a note with an attached poem titled “When I Went Fishing with Dad” written by a Mary E. Van Dyne, it didn’t ring any bells.
Kathy’s dad, John W. Wallace of Ligonier, found it going through some of his mother’s items.
“This poem brought back many memories to him and has asked me to forward to you in hopes you would consider a reprint of this poem,” she said.
First, I thought, I’m going to find out a little bit about the author. I read a good bit, much of my subject material being hunting and fishing literature, but little of it is poetryand I’d never heard of Van Dyne.
It turns out that’s probably not surprising.
A quick Google search revealed that Van Dyne actually spelled her name Vandyne. But beyond that, she’s a bit of a mystery.
I found only one reference to her “Fishing with Dad” poem, in a book called “Harper’s Cyclopaedia of British and American Poetry” published by Harper & Brothers in New York in 1882.
Otherwise, I came across only two other poems she wrote, neither outdoors related. There was “The Nation’s Birthday” and “The Bald-Headed Tyrant.”
But you can check out Vandyne’s ode to fishing with dad by clicking on the link below, courtesy of Wallace. It’s tattered, but mostly readable.
Maybe it will bring back memories for you, or inspire you to create new ones.