Believe it or not, there are about three others who are claiming authorship of “I Said A Prayer For You”. The first time I heard that poem, was from my grandmother who claimed authorship of it back in the late 1970’s. As a matter of fact, I video taped her reading “I Said A Prayer For You” in November of 1984 as you read other poems she wrote with it. As I write this, I’m trying to down-load “I Said A Prayer For You” onto a LiveLeak site, and, having difficulty. Still, just letting you know that IF Zamboni, or, one of the two others wrote that poem and NOT my grandmother, then, my grandmother was swiping other people’s poems. IF “I Said a Prayer” IS her poem, the ONLY way I can think that others are getting credit for writing it, like Zamboni and two others, is IF someone liked it in one of those huge, thick books filled with amature poets that she use to contribute poems to back in the late 1970’s. Books, like my year books my mom threw out, thinking they were taking up too much room. OH well.
By the way, my grandmother (who I called granny), and, who I feel is the REAL author of “I Said a Prayer For You Today”, went by the name of “Myrtle Day Mitchelle”. She was born in September 1905, and, died right before Thanksgiving, 1998. She made a living as an elementary school teacher, and, later, took care of her first son who was paranoid schizophrenic, possibly due to experimenting with LSD. She had good help from her husband, Milton, who use to be a teacher, and, later, worked in a mental institution. She had a peaceful death. She got up, put on her clothes, make-up and ear-rings, like she was going some place, and, she died, falling on her bed. She never had to be put in a home, even though she had no short-term memory at the end. Her life’s moto was, “Be grateful to God, and, never complain” (knowing that things could be so much far worse).
One last thing about “I Said A Prayer For You Today”. My other grandmother (who is still alive at 102 as I write this, but, looks like she won’t be alive a week from now…is comatose as I write this), said she heard my other granny’s poem “I Said A Prayer For You Today” on a Christian radio show back in the late 1980’s. The preacher who read it, said, “I don’t know who wrote this poem, but, I shall read it to you now.” It was a preacher named Ray Ogolvey? Anyway, I thought, “Yeah, right. It’s probably something that just sounded like it.” Then, in 2003, I was going to a trucking school to get my class A license, and, as I was talking to my trucking teacher, I noticed he had a plack of the poem on the wall of his cubicle. A wooden plack given to him from one of his students. As I read it, I felt tears rise up, for it WAS the poem I took for my grandmother’s. It was as if God was saying, “I know you are going through dreary times, but, your grandmother is with Me.” It was like getting a little unexpected visit from her from the other side. My trucking teacher asked me what the matter was, I told him, and, he called me a liar right on the spot. Still, though, it was like a little light in the darkness that was my life at that time. And, I STILL feel good about it this day, happy to know that, it’s so popular, others are claiming authorship of it.