Love Letters to Daddy


Other Books by the Author;

A Child’s Journey Through Darkness

Weeping Child To Forgiving Child

A Child Interrupted

And The Child grew Up

Crushed Violets

Copyright © 2017 by Donna Nieri

Love Letter I

Daddy, you were bombed last


I remember

Windows reflecting morning

light, in the breakfast nook,

as I quietly enter to see if

you are alright.

You are hiding behind

the newspaper and unable to

look upon your daughter’s


I moved slowly to your side,

wanting to say, “please don’t

send me away.”

Alcohol vapors from

a glass, sting my nose.

You don’t acknowledge me,

It is as if I don’t exist.

Oh, Daddy, you were the one,

with the clickity click click of

the tongue and the crazy

songs you sung.

Where did Mama go? I think

she got tired and left.

I remember her pouring water

from bottles down the drain,

but it had a funny smell. I

couldn’t really tell.

Who is this strange lady in

your house? The one wearing

a negligee. You both

swing and sway from room to

room. Then pass out on the

bed. Sounds of heavy breathing

are alarming. I am confused

and don’t know what to do!

Viciousness in the kitchen,

the day you staggered across

the kitchen floor.

A pressure pot of beans

exploding on the ceiling,

sending you to the hospital


I begged you not to drink,

but you once again began

to sink. I’m sorry Daddy, I

make you drink.

Well, my visit with you

is almost done, and my time

is spent. I will soon be

sent away. Really Daddy,

will you send me back to

those abusers and their evil

ways? Aww, please, why do you

let them do this for?

I really don’t think I can

take much more!

Oh, don’t make me leave.

Don’t make me go back to that

smelly shack.

Your pungent smell of vinegar,

cukes and alcohol are

better than that.

But my pleas were ignored, you

were just too sick to have me

around. My composure was once

again cast down.

That 5th of whiskey

Made you awful thirsty.

Remember how you swerved on

those LA freeways, taking me

to the bus? Without a sound,

not a word was

said between us?

The roar of the engines and

exhaust fumes, carry me to

a place I would rather not go.

Finally climbing the steps,

crying, unaware of the effects

on an innocent child from no


Well Daddy, I remember these

things whether you do or not.

So I am writing you some

letters, in the hope to be

freed of the pain they have


Love Letter II

Well, after my visit, I went

back home and as usual, we

began moving around from


town to town. Schools had rules

and I had to relearn

each one.


I got into trouble, Daddy, when

I came back, I started chasing

around, doing stupid things

that you can only do in a mining



with gambling, bars and

fights. Those evil men did

things to me that were not



Many times I was up till midnight.

Often there was no food.

Sometimes a can of Dinty Moore

stew would do. But once more I had

hoped things would get better.


I’m so glad you didn’t know this,



heart would have broken in two,

for all the trials your child

went through.


I wouldn’t be

honest if I denied my anger.


were you when I needed

protection from danger?


But daddy, you would have been

proud of me, I learned to

survive, it is amazing what

children can do when they try.


I tried many things to protect

my self, they were not the smart

thing to do, but it was all

I knew.


I tried to come in out of the

rain, opening my umbrella to

escape the pain, but storms

kept coming, opening the door

for more.


I developed a set of rules to

deal with the craziness of things..

I somehow got through the years,

but there were many tears.


I had difficulties with Mama.

She was unbearable to live

with and I wanted out of the



She kept going into those

buildings with flashing lights

for hours. I stared in

the windows. But she


would never win those games she

played, even though she went

every day.


I thought the way was to

get married, and before you

knew it, I had two children,

living in a mining town.


But I knew in my heart I would

never raise them like me.

And then I was shown a way to

be safe from the trauma I had



Well, this is pretty long and

you have bent your ear to hear

this story. You know Daddy, I

really appreciate you listening

now, since you didn’t hear or

see me when I was a child.


Oh, and one thing I forgot to

mention, there will be mistakes

in these letters, since they


are written from a little girl’s

heart that was torn apart.


Some are written in a different

tense, past

and future. but it makes sense,

since I never learned to live

in the present tense.

Love Letter III

Well Daddy, Here I am again. I’ve

been thinking about what I said.


I know it sounds pretty sad and

I have tried to think of some

words to make you glad.


Wow, Daddy the nightmares were

bad and fearful thoughts struck

my mind. The thoughts wouldn’t



I felt shame most of the time.

Why does it matter?

Why do I dread

thoughts of others?


Maybe because mine had been

shattered and only theirs



Then there was placed in my heart

a desire to do differently. A

reformation is revealed.


I had a glimpse of something

better. A candle is lit bursting

into flame,

a soul has been claimed. I have

hope to be delivered from shame.


Choosing an austere journey,

one of piety and devotion,

I was sure this was the solution.


I was confused between you and

God, I was mixed up and thought

He was like you, never here.

It was unclear. I knew about love


in my head, but couldn’t seem

to understand it in my heart.

I knew I was sincere, but I

still have that fear.


And after a while the

thoughts became even more


And I could not get them out of

my head.


Daddy, even though I had sworn

not to follow you, I

found myself doing it, only in

a different way.

My way was safe, I thought.



Love Letter IV

You know, Daddy,


I had no other place to

go, other than where you were.


And that was not an option.

As I said, “I will

choose a better way than you

and your deceptions.”


Did you think

One more drink would make

It better.  Like me, one more

Prayer would make you care?


One day I was stricken with

a God driven direction.

Sitting in a pew that I had

been guided to, the organ


struck the chords as from the

hymnal I sang. I knew this was

the answer to all my questions.

My heart rejoiced

and I was blessed.


Soon after this, my empty mind

was ushered into a cathedral

filled with mighty crescendos.


Then guided to the altar, I

faltered at the solemnity of

this place.

But this was short lived and my

peace was erased.


Soon after this reckoning, my

empty mind became subjected

to tormenting thoughts. I was

full of doubt.

It is hard to explain this

illness that struck my mind. It

would be vain to try.

No one would understand.


Well, Daddy, you know we had no values, no

or religious ties.

Where it came from I don’t know.


It struck out of the blue,

with petrifying force. Shaking

me to the core. Undermining the


very foundation of my being,

already in a fragile state of

fear and grief.


The thoughts brought me to

my knees. I tried to bid farewell,

I really did, but when I did,

one thought was connected to


another, forming a great circle,

then I began to buckle with fear,

as the words came up from the



Some said the thoughts can be

changed, which could be true.

But do they really understand


the chains that squeeze and

defy? When one is discarded

another takes its place.


Then it forms a loop forming

a whole new group. That’s

what OCD and Scrupulosity do.


As a rule, the tools should

work, and maybe for a moment

they do, but like butterflies

in my head,

their wings never fly as high



I know this is difficult for

you to hear, but after much

help and many years, Daddy,

it got better.


Love Letter V

Good Morning Daddy,


It’s your little girl, do you

remember me?

I have come to visit. I’ll


just sit here by your side.

It has been such a long time

since you died.


It is so quiet and peaceful.

I see an

angel guarding your grave. It

is quite strange, I don’t


understand why

this would be, since you really

didn’t have any angelic virtues

that I could see.


But I like reading your name

upon your stone.

it helps me to know you really

did exist. Cause it is hard

to believe.


I remember all the times you

were stoned and the times

you left me alone.


Really Daddy, I don’t want to

remember you like this.


After you got sick, it was so

hard to see you like that, I

resolved I would never continue

your disease.


As I said before, I

mean well, but I have chosen

something that is bitter sweet.


Something that would try to meet my

needs in a mindful, pious way.

Little did I know I would be

sorry one day.

Love Letter VI

This is the last letter

I will write,


Well Daddy, the ball has been

in your court, you have called

the shots.


You always seemed to be the

la la man, to always

have fun, tipping the bottle,


on the poker table with your

friends. Puffs of smoke curl

to the ceiling,

surrounding this girl, making

her invisible.


Damn, Daddy, why do I do this,

give you free rent in my head?

Just going through life

believing what you said?


I thought you held the keys,

and if I could just please

you enough, I would be alright.


I searched the pews looking for

you. I did everything I knew.

When I went to church, I always


followed the rules. No rouge

on my cheeks, no fringe upon

my dress, my boots polished


to a lustrous shine, then

maybe, you, I could find. But

you died too soon, leaving

me with a picture incomplete.


I don’t know the reason why

these things happened,

but perhaps the dark night of

this child’s soul has a purpose


and a reason, to help others

who question, like I. Then that makes

it alright.

So dear Daddy… I am going to have

to let you go… and say goodbye.

Thank you for listening to your

little girl’s plight.

- The following poems are from other published works by the author -

Tribute to an Alcoholic Father

He was stumbling to the tune of

A drunken state, staggering and

Swaying to the music he made.


Oh, the power of the bottle,

Hidden in drawers and secret places,

As he searched and searched to

Alleviate his thirst.

Why will some men for a bottle of rye

Be willing to die? While some for a

Bottle of gin, go into the gutter again?

Drinking themselves into oblivion?


No one to help this family that was torn

Apart, when little children were sent away,

So small, and all due to alcohol!


All I know is at the end of his life,

He was swaddled in diapers, groaning in

Pain, with his liver inflamed. So


Many sores, not even his doctor could

Relieve the suffering he bore.

Oh, but what a peaceful look came upon

His face, when no longer tortured and his

Pain erased.


How many follow in the footsteps of their

Families on earth? But God’s quiver

Is full of arrows to point His children

In a different way, than the way they

Were bent, the way my father went.


Now I know I must put the pain and anguish

Aside – but by God’s grace go I. This is

The father I loved and clung to, in spite

Of his sin, for I knew none better, all

Children cling to what was given to them.


I share these words for those who can relate,

To know it is not too late, for the Father

Up above to take up the slack, that our

Fathers lacked.


Come along and join the band, share the

Song of the drunken man, that no one,

But those who have gone through

This can understand!









Crevices in My Mind

I fell asleep to the radio,

The station went off at half past

Twelve. Once again I fell asleep,


To the droning of the mill

Down the street. The conveyor

Belts vibrated and jumped,


Separating ore from dirt.

The noise was unbearable to hear,

My mind fell into a nightmare.


Many wheels turning and spinning

In my head, clocks ticking

And chiming all at once.


Spinning, ticking, turning,

Tossing in my sleep.

Sighing, crying, grinding

My teeth.


Abruptly I awoke,

Opened wide my eyes, fear tucked

In the crevices of my mind.

No peace did I find.


To the miners picking at my

Brain before – on the bedpost

I hung a sign – “No Trespassing”,

This place is for sleep, and

nothing more.

Disquiet Sleep

Because of abnormal hours

Spent in cars and theaters

And being left alone,

I developed a sleep disorder.

The patterns were disrupted.


Because I was sleep deprived

I found it difficult at night,

Due to terrifying nightmares.

Many feelings were repressed


Because of abuse and they

Would try to surface at night.

I had nightmares that would

Constantly repeat themselves.




Disquiet Sleep


Memories playing out in

The deep unconsciousness

Of sleep,


Like waves of the sea,

As the mind rolls over

And over,


Trying to decipher these

Meaningless perceptions,

Where they have been


Buried in the watery

Grave, a place where no

Man can go.


Only God the Father* sees

The spinning thoughts

Entrapped. I try to make

Sense of this


Futile existence.

Each unresolved issue


In the deep recesses of

My mind.


I cry unto God and He

Hears my prayers,

To remove this terror

Of night,


To lead me beside still

Waters and

Quiet streams,

To give sweet repose in

His holy light!








“In disquieting thoughts from the vision

of the night, when deep sleep falls on

men” Job 4:13

I am a Miner

I go to work every day -

With my pick and shovel,

But not for silver and gold.


The more I shovel, the

Deeper it gets -

It is dark in here.


The earthen womb bears

Memories, seen from

The eye and heard from

The ear.


I pick and shovel all

Day and night – nothing

Moves to the left or



Icicles in this cave,

Drip tears on my

Mind. Drip – drip -

Never goes away.



I gave up lipstick long

Ago – two red lips now thin and

Pale, – Lines drawn on my eyes

Removed, eye shadows too, now

Two hollow holes in my head.

No Blush on the cheeks,

Face long and drawn.

The holes that were bored for

Earrings – skin filled in.

No more dangles, bangles,

Diamonds or anything.


My unaltered face, erased

From the world.

Pure and obscured.

Now wearing suitable clothes,


Nothing that bares my skin.

An angled tooth took away my



I was pure – I was clean,

As a washing machine.

Pure as a virgin, sacred as

A nun, I joined a cloister,

But not for fun.


I faced the world plain -

I was a rare scene,

Thinking I had cleaned up

Myself – little did I know

The inside walls needed

Scrubbing as well.


Nevada Mining Towns

Dust storms and tumble weeds,

Cold winter night,

Screeching voices,

Howling through the town


Cursed with fright.

They had a story

To tell – one from hell!


Boards creak in front of the

Local saloon, as my brother

And I search for cigarette butts,


Not much luck, we head for home,

With cold fingers and toes, we

Hasten our steps as, we walk



Tired from our day, we get

In bed, but first,

Shaking blankets and sheets,


For scorpions and spiders,

A nightly ritual,

Before we go to sleep.


We are awakened by parents,

Back from the saloon,

Drinking and gambling,


Now all the money is gone!

Fighting begins with, yelling

And threats – once again in debt.


No food for the children, we go

Back to sleep, with hungry stomachs

And bad dreams to keep.


The potbellied stove had long

Gone out, our shoes by the door,

For trips to the outhouse,


Just too cold – Hopefully we

Can hold it till dawn, neither

Of us could linger there long.


We awaken from sleep,

Parents are gone,

Just as we expect,

For who knows how long?

Is anyone’s bet!


Red Shoes

We went to the store

To look at shoes -

I chose a red pair,

Shiny and pretty,


My mother said no and

we walked down the street

of the city.


We would come back.

after an errand she must


Do – to double the money

So she could buy food and



She slipped through the

Door of a building, lit

With enticing lights -

Blinking, sparkling, in

The night,


To play 21 – she would

Be there till the money

Was done.


I waited on the street for

Hours, she came through the

Door – no smile, but sad.

She had lost the money -

No shoes or food for

Another two weeks – but

Then, it will happen all

Over again!


The Old Mining House

Frozen in the mining house.

12 degrees too cold

For 6 inch buried pipes.

The blow torch took all night.


Slipping down the icy hill,

We carried water buckets

From the creek.


The old wood stove went out,

When we left for school,

Coming home, we stoked it,

But it never recovered it’s

Warmth at night.


Seeing our breath,

Like puffs of smoke,

Frost on the inside panes,


Layers of wallpaper could

Not keep the wind from

Coming through.


My brother went to the pen,

To look for eggs -

The chickens were curled

In their nests, trying


To stay warm -

Hoo-Ray! There were frozen

Ones, we would have break-

Fast that day.


We wrapped in brown blankets

To keep warm, piling them

High, burying our faces under


Neath them all. Laying very

Still so a draft wouldn’t

Come through.


The bathroom was so cold

We had to place our hands

Between our butts and the

toilet seat.


The roof leaked -

Making an obstacle course

Of pans and bowls, to

Catch the water dripping

From the holes.


Listening to the rats in the attic,

Left alone most of the time,

We scrambled to survive -

Amazing what children can do!


Seeking His Love

As A young adult with two children, I was converted

To Christianity. I did not want to raise my

Children the way I was raised and I was looking

For a way to change the course of my life. I

Became very religious, my whole life revolved


Around the church. Unfortunately, with my history

Of dysfunction and role models of my parents, I

Looked to God as I did to them. I know God

Understood my inability to fathom his love – He


Loved me anyway. I then developed an illness that

Is a facet of OCD, called Scrupulosity, which many

People are not aware of, and have difficulty even

Pronouncing. It is over concern with religious and


Moral issues, with difficulty believing God loves

Them, praying repetitive prayers and confessions.

I have a dear friend who saw some information on it

At church and I then discovered why I was doing these

Things so out of character for a Christian who is

Promised God’s peace and love.

Seeking His Love


I know you said it Lord,

Many times, was I not

Listening, were other

Things on my mind?


You said You loved me,

Over and over, and I

Said, “But Lord, my head

Knows, but I don’t


Feel it in my heart,

There must be something

I can do to seek your

Love – Oh, where do I



My thoughts I cannot

Control -

These doubts are eating

At my soul.


My approach unto You is like

Luther’s of long

Ago, when he ascended


“The Holy Staircase” to

Reach You on his knees,

Seeking Your


Acceptance and grace in

Another place. He seized

The chance to earn penance,

By trying ever trying, to


Earn indulgences, in his

Innocence, to ease his


kissing each step, seeking

Peace and forgiveness.


As I ascend the staircase

Of life with -

Calloused knees and broken

Heart, feeling as if I am


Falling apart, in austerity,

Please grant me the clarity

To see Your love freely

Given, as spoken in your



May Your stairway

Become pillars of strength,

And when the ravenous prey


Come into my mind to plant

Their seeds of doubt,

Please chase them away!






Where Did He Go



Where did you go?


I would like to know -

I’ve tried to replace you -

With sweat and tears,


How can I let them out?

They are as hard as a rock,

They are a part of me.


If they were not, what would

I be? – a mere smidgen of me.

A trifle – like a day


Without sun and a night without

Stars -


A rainbow without colors -


An ocean without water -


Daddy, do you remember your



A Poem to Daddy

I traveled the desert looking

for your name,


I sought through the drought,

but always found the same,


I chased shadows looking for a

picture of you,


I tried my best,

Now I will lay it to rest.


I will play in sand castles

in the sky,


And not question the reason



Now I have come to a mountain

where I can fly,


To a spring where waters flow,

never failing,


Reflecting a Father, and there

will be no more goodbyes.




Love Letters to Daddy

Love Letters to Daddy are poetic memoirs written to an alcoholic father long since passed. These writings try to reconcile the negative influences he left upon his daughter. Sharing with the reader how she found hope and help. About the Author; Donna Nieri was raised primarily in several isolated mining towns throughout Nevada. Her childhood was laced with neglect and emotional abuse from parents addicted to alcohol and gambling. She writes on those experiences in order to share with others how she found deliverance and hope. Other ebook's by the Author; A Child's Journey Through Darkness, Child Interrupted, Weeping Child to Forgiving Child, Crushed Violets, And The Child Grew Up

  • Author: Donna Nieri
  • Published: 2017-01-16 00:05:17
  • Words: 3776
Love Letters to Daddy Love Letters to Daddy