Dad’s Old Pliers

One for Father’s Day…A Tribute to my “Dad”.


Dad’s Old Pliers


Small problem…that looked big…came my way…

And found me fixing something…just like back in the day… 

Got me to thinking of a much simpler way…

When things were less complicated…as they are today.

Those long ago days when you just needed a little “know-how”…

And you could fix your own basic necessities…not like now.

Now…you need a Degree in Engineering or Applied Science…

If you’re going to start trying to fix…even the simplest appliance.

Or watch a “Crash Course” YouTube Video…or have a certified license…

Because things these days…been re-engineered…past the point of nonsense.

Well…I won’t get into any more of that…and show my age…

Just know…I liked learning “Windows”…though it was hard to * turn the page (*perhaps a slight pun…aimed at old typewriters).

And…If you’re an engineer…you really should over-design a simple car radio…

I mean knobs and push buttons that actually were easy…are so outdated…don’t you know.

But, then I ramble too much…as I think of things from a “long ago” time…

I mean…I should keep buying stereos…from 8-track to MP3…I don’t mind.

And…45’s to MTV to YouTube…Shoot…everything has to change…

My deep, internal question…is at what point must it all be re-arranged?

I have to add the changes in phones…from roto-dial and public pay phones…that use to only take a dime…

Nowadays, you can carry ’em in your top pocket everywhere…watch videos or take pictures with ’em…anytime.

You can’t keep redesigning the proverbial wheel…

Or maybe…this ol’ timer…is just making too big a deal.

As I completed my simple project…with pliers in hand…

I thought back to my “Dad”…a great person…but like me…an ordinary man.

And…I thought about how simple things were…back in the day…

Most everything could be fixed with basic tools…in some manner…or way…

My Dad was a trained Accountant…a CPA…

But…he still got his hands dirty fixing the basics…I must say.

And so did…all the other “Dad’s”…up and down our street…

Come to think of it…so did both “Granddad’s”…which is kind’a **”neat” (**50’s saying).

As I looked down at the pliers…that had just come to the rescue for what I needed done…

A little bit scratched…yet the chrome on it still shined…in the early afternoon Sun.

And realized…that what I had chosen to fix my dilemma…was the simplest thing I could find…

Way down in the bottom of my tools…but as I examine it…Its presence…comes to mind.

These are my “Dad’s Old Pliers”…the perfect tool…that really helped me out…so much…

For one moment…I stared at his approving gaze…and he felt near enough…to touch.

It was like I had been working with him close by…with our heads under the hood of an old car of mine…

“Dad…Thanks for helping me out!”…the memory of you always helping me…has never faded with time.



“Dad…Thanks for helping me out!”


Steve Walters -joined TCE in the Fall of 2021. Keep an eye on his author page for many great works to come.

You can also find works by Steve Walters (who uses the pen name of ManlyPoetryMan) on:  ManlyPoetryMan on HubPages.

And on Manly Poetry Man’s website: Home | Manly Poetry Man

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8 thoughts on “Dad’s Old Pliers

  • June 11, 2022 at 11:04 AM

    Steve this was pure magic. My dad keeps giving me his tools as he ages. I have a pretty formidable collection of wrenches and screwdrivers, old power tools, etc, all with a good story behind them. Great ode to your dad. Also speaking on the complexity of things today, many of the add ons seem to be for aesthetic reasons. They crazy technological advances are for the younger generation. My parents still can’t figure out cell phones, but guess what they don’t really need to. To modern tech. is going to be the downfall of society at some point, yes it has its pros but the ability that little phone has to systematically remove people from the conversation is crazy. Nice work ~Paul

    • June 27, 2022 at 3:44 PM

      Thank you, Paul. This one cuts close to the bone as it pretty much goes along in words…as it did in my head…right up to almost visualizing my Dad’s approving gaze. Sometimes even the simplest of things fall into place and it can remind us of much bigger things than our little annoying problem that must be dealt with the first thing you can find…in the tool box. Ohhh…the crazy technology that goes into things we use to take for granted…like tune knobs on the radio. I could spin that (old-type) knob around and land exactly on the Radio Station I wanted…every time. It was so easy. Nostalgia fuels a writer. It is perfect for contrast! Thank you very much for reading and commenting on this one.

  • June 11, 2022 at 6:48 PM

    Our Dads are always there for us, even if it is from long ago memories. Sometimes I face a problem and from out of my past comes a message or lesson from my Dad that helps me out. Love your poem, Steve. Great work on the rhyming.

    • June 27, 2022 at 3:56 PM

      “Dads are always there for us…even if it is from long ago memories.” That is so well-said. This one sentence you placed in the comments…says it all. I hope that somehow this message gets back to our “Dad’s”. Even the ones that are not with us any longer. Like anyone that we miss…even if it has been a very long time…suddenly something jolts you back to a memory of them. What a high honor…to know that you left all kinds of impressions with your child…that can last forever. There is great power in being a Dad…if you think about it. Well…this Poem kind’a hits close to home with me. So…I’ll just say “Thanks” for reading this one and for your great comment…in the spirit of the Poem.

  • June 13, 2022 at 7:02 AM

    Great Steve! You are on the money with the pliers. I have so many memories of grabbing the pliers out of the tool bag for Dad and your poem got me thinking about all the times my kids have done the same for me. Great job! Jamie

    • June 27, 2022 at 4:06 PM

      Thank you for your comment. You sound just like me. I grabbed so many tools from out of my Dad’s tools…It wasn’t even funny. Even to this day…I need some of his old tools to get the job done. Each tool had a story it seemed. You could rummage through the old tool chest and see all kind of contraptions. Why are they so much a part of how we remember our Dad’s? I can’t seem to figure that out…even though I wrote with this in mind. They are a part of how we see our Dad’s…that they can or could do so much. I hope that all “Dad’s” get the credit they deserve on “Father’s Day”! Thank you for reading this one, also.

  • June 15, 2022 at 4:43 AM

    A great poem, Steve, and one I can relate to. I still have many of my dad’s old tools that work fine. Technology is supposed to make life easier, but many mechanical items were much easier to work on and fix in the past with basic tools. Now everything including cars are computerised, and you need specialized tools to do almost everything. One day everything will go too far and we will all need to use this old simple but reliable tools.

    • June 27, 2022 at 4:23 PM

      Glad you could relate to this one. It appears that many of us can relate to the tools our Dad had. There must be something to picking up that original piece of old metal…to do something like our “Dad’s” would’ve had to do…that is very relatable with each of us. Something in that connection. For me, it was the one moment I lifted my head up…from bending down inside my truck…with my Dad’s Old Pliers! A familiar thing of the past. I like how you said that everything will go too far with technology one day…and we will all have to basically go back to simpler tools…or perhaps simpler ways. I feel like that must be how I feel about technological advances that don’t make sense…like putting computers in cars…and sensors. Seems to me…that the original Model T motor had the ability to drive from ocean to ocean (in the US) (on bad roads) just fine…yet we still have to advance its technology…Go Figure! Thanks for reading and commenting on this one.


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