My dad did a lot of things in the Air Force besides his job as a nuclear security inspector. He has a great many friends - all of them quality likeable people. One of them was Colonel James Radden, a really nice guy who I have only vague memories of from my childhood. He wrote a poignant yet funny poem which I still remember to this day. It is worth sharing.

Oh, dirty flattened little toad,
Why did you try to cross the road?
Why did you not perceive the truck
Which was to be your worst bad luck?

I know that your distress was dire
When you looked up to see that tire.
You gathered for a mighty jump,
The driver didn't feel the bump.

I can see the imprint of the tread;
Oh flattened toad, you sure are dead.

Col. James Radden, 1975 My dad will occasionally find an unfortunate toad who has expired by the described method. If relatively intact and desiccated, he will lacquer it with several layers, glue it to a wooden plaque, and inscribe this poem upon the plaque. I have one hanging in my office. It's a great conversation piece, and a reminder of our mortality.

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