Dear Dad

Dear-Dad-LacingCheryl went to Ohio to visit her parents since her dad was anticipating surgery. As his pain increased and he weakened, the doctor decided to reschedule the operation earlier, which coincided precisely with Cheryl’s visit. The time with her dad was stressful and at the same time, poignant. She returned to California for a short time and then we left for Italy.

As a way of helping her process the unresolved emotions, we wrote this song. It’s in the format of an “open letter” to her dad, reminding him of times gone by and her recollections of those sweet times together. The last line, “. . . the story of you and me,” helped her remember that they do share a story. They have common ground, and that story is uniquely theirs.

As a gift to him, we decided to record the song and send a copy of the drawing inspired by Cheryl’s childhood Valentine’s Day card. It arrived in time for his 81st birthday.


Dear Dad
Hope you are feeling better soon
It was so good to see you
Sorry I couldn’t stay
There’s always so much to be done
That I had to be on my way

Tell Mom
I know she ‘s doing all she can
Somehow try not to worry
Tomorrow’s another day
But I always have so much to do
I had to be on my way

I know it doesn’t matter much
There’s nothing I can do
Yet somehow, at least for the moment
Everything seems okay
Maybe after all you’ve been through
You’re finally on your way
At last, finally on your way

Wasn’t it just yesterday that I handed you a crayoned paper
Folded heart Valentine: “I love you, my big tall Daddy”

It seems like only yesterday you taught me to bait a fish-hook
I thought they wanted crusts of bread, instead of earthworms
Casting lines, spending time—childhood memories
Those times were so long ago, still I remember

So Dad
Know that you are on my mind
If you happen to need me
I’m only a call away
We’ll talk of all the times we’ve shared
And ones that are yet to be
The story of you and me


From Toward the Light, track released 01 January 2008
Cheryl Martlage – Lyrics and vocals
Emerson Martlage – Music, guitar and vocals
Mr Toad’s San Francisco – Mastering
Inspiration – Kenneth Tibbs