I heard the doorbell ring. 

Elsie answered it. 

Heard some voices and then this:

            “Excuse me,” Elsie said,

           “Dirk is here to see you.”  

 And in a split second through my mind  

           rushed the fact that  “Dirk” was 

           his nic-name,  

       …short for “Dirksen.”

          That he’s a cousin or something to

           late U. S. Senator from Illinois:

             …Everette Dirksen.

                (He even has an office building

                 named after him,

                             …in Chicago, I think.)

 And then I remembered, come to think of it,

through my years I know:

               …Sharon, my barber, niece of

                   past governor Otto Kerner of

                   Illinois who was also chair of

                   the Kerner Commission that

                   looked into the assassination

                   of JFK; and

               …Charlie who is a cousin of U.S

                   Representative Henry Hyde of

                   presidential impeachment fame

                   with his “youthful indiscretion”

                   excuse, who put a word in with

                   him to consider me for House

                   Chaplain (oh, I didn’t get the

                   job); and

               …Steve, who is shirt-tail relation

                   to a General and President

                   called “Ike;” and

               …John, related somehow to the

                   Hancock of Declaration of

                   Independence fame; and

               …Clara who was the roommate of

                   the Dillinger “Lady in Red;” and

               …the cousin of US House

                   Speaker Denny Hastert who

                   owns White Fence Farm (he

                   always says “hi” to me when I

                    come in for chicken); and

                …the two brothers…I forget their

                    names…from New Life…who

                    are on Michael Madigan’s staff.


Well, anyway, Elsie said:

         “Excuse me, Dirk is here to see you.”


I got up from my desk chair.

         “Hi, Dirk.  good to see you.  How are

          you doing?”


Shaking hands, he said:

           “Fine.  Here, I made this for you,” and

           handed me a CD.

          “In that bulletin,”  he continued, “you

           talked about how you didn’t have a

           Bible, so I made this for you.  It has

           five different versions on it.  One of

           them is in Greek.” *


Taking the CD, said I:          

          “Thanks, Dirk, just think, on this one

            CD, all these different Bibles.


            If all my books were on CD’s, my

                                    library shelves would

                                    be empty and

                                …nobody would be



            We laughed.


            “Thanks again, Dirk.”


            “You’re welcome.  Merry



            “Merry Christmas.”


He left, leaving me with a special connection for the New Year.


           Thanks, Dirk.




*Bible versions on CD include the following:

 Basic English, Douay Rheims, French 

 Darby, Greek NT, Hebrew Translit, KJV,

 Latin Version.