Mr Randy Phillips
c/o Promise Keepers
Boulder, Co 80308
Dear Mr Phillips,
I just received an interesting letter from my sister telling me my husband’s poem “The Cold Within” has made its way to Colorado. Her son, Dr. … Lutz recently attended a Christian Parenting Seminar and bought your tapes. He was enjoying hearing them while riding around Columbus when the familiar quote surprised him.
I am aware Jim’s poems occasionally appear in church bulletins around Cinsinnati, Oh, where we lived but this was amazing coming from such a distance.
I thought you might be interested in knowing “the poet”. James Patrick Kinney was the “poet laureate” of the Proctor & Gamble Engineering Division where he worked for 20 years as mechanical technician. He saluted (?) birthdays, promotions (?) and retirements with humorous ditties. However, some of his more serious poems have been shared with the family in a booklet I produced after Jim’s death. This explains how my nephew recognized the poem. Jim died in 1973 at age 51 of a heart attack, leaving many more poems unwritten. He did realize his dream to retire in Florida, even though it was on a disability retirement of 11 months duration.
“The Cold Within”, truly his best work, was sent to “The Saturday Evening Post” in the 60’s and was returned with a rejection slip as being too controversal for the times. Jim happened to be a methodist serving on the local joint church Ecumenical Committee with Al Huseman of St Martin’s Catholic Church. Al, his chief mentor, sent “the poem” in to “The Liguorian”, a Catholic Publication where it appeared in print!
Jim’s always said life is only worthwhile if we leave something of value behind. I’m sure he would be grateful to know you appreciated his poem enough to include it on your tape.
I’ve sent along couple of Jim’s other poems I like, in case you care to read them.
Mrs. James Kinney
(now Kenny as I married Homer Kenny in 1978)