Fame’s Poison

Be careful what you wish for in life. Sometimes what looks like all glitz and glitter comes with a  great cost.  Fame is sought by many as we see by the ongoing reality shows such as American Idol, America’s Got Talent, The Voice, etc. There is a tremendous amount of work and often a lot of compromise involved in getting to the top. Staying there is even harder since everyone else is trying to take your place. Then there are the paranahs just waiting to see you fall so they can chew you up in the tabloids.  In the past there have been people who were stars that lost their life for various reason.  Elvis, Patsy Cline, Buddy Holly and others died in their prime. Martin Luther King, JFK, Marlyn Monroe, even Lincoln all died in their prime. They are often remembered and revered.  Fame has it s costs. Some say it’s like Robert Johnson selling his soul to the devil at the Crossroads.  Then others like Cosby or Lauer who switch from being loved to being despised in a day’s time. Be careful what you wish for.

Fame’s Poison

Desiring fame and fortune

Is a fleeting fantasy

Walking that tightrope can kill you

As you rise above the crowd.


You make your way across the wire

For the thrill and accolades

Keeps adrenaline steadily pumping

You must  ascend the stage again.


One slip. one missstep, one balance mistake

For you it’s a paranah’s end

How soon they turn against you

Few get up to walk again.


Fear. shame, and insecurities

Plague you to the end

Perhaps the fall should have ended all

Going down

While you were still king.


Photo: oddstuffmagazing.com



The Ship’s Bell Tolls – (a Hai bun)


The Ship’s Bell Tolls

One of my favorite songs of all time is the Wreck of the Edmond Fitzgerald. The haunting lyrics tell such a great story. It recounts the perilous journey of a freighter loaded with 26,000 tons of steel headed for the car factories of Cleveland, Ohio.  It must have been a scary sad time when the sailors realized they were taking on water and going down.  The cold icy waters of Lake Superior took their toll and all was lost.

Icy wind whistles

Superior’s fright’ning death song

Sailors all go down


The Wreck of the Edmond Fitzgerald – Gordon Lightfoot : YouTube.com


Haikus for a Winter Day



Big wet snowflakes

Hold hands as they dance toward earth

Melting hearts are warm




Red Cardinals arrive

Filling their gullets with seeds

For a long cold night



Carolina Wren

Hyper little wren

Nervous always moving round

Chipper little friend




Black-capped Chickadees

Dressed in his gray and white tux

Eat seeds with abandon



Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Capturing Light


I was inspired by this thought, “If you shine light into a box and then close the lid, do you still have light. No, you have darkness rather than light.” Unless you have the source of light in the box you have no light.  I had to think how many times people take what they perceive to be truth and light and metaphorically put it into their own box. So often we find their light no longer shines.  Our prompt for d’Verse~Poetry Pub is take a word and use it symbolically  to mean something else. I chose the word Light;     This is a painting I finished last weekend that I called Capturing Light.

Capturing Light

Ever try capturing light in a box

Close the lid tightly to contain it

Light in a box is a paradox

There’s no source there to maintain it


As you snap the lid shut

Think you have it at last

The rays disappear in an instant

For rays alone do not make light

With rays there’s no way save them


For light you see of every kind

From Rabbi, priest, or committee

Does not come from their simple minds

It comes from a source that’s emitting


Reflecting is all we can ever do

Our creator’s the source of our light

When it comes right down to me and to you

The best we can do is to shine bright


Light is not something to capture and hold

Thinking surely we can improve it

How disappointed we will be

Finding blackness boxed up all through it


Painting: Dwight L. Roth

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Grandma’s Black Raspberry Pie

Grandma's Black Raspberry Pie

My grandma died when I was very young, but one thing I remember was her delicious black raspberry pie. When we arrived at her house for a visit, she would get out her pie, even if it was in the middle of the afternoon. Her pies were smooth like custard since she strained out all the seeds. Something that good is never forgotten.   This poem is one for the dVerse poetry group prompt: visit.

Black Raspberry Pie

My earliest recollection

Of real fruit pie

Is sitting at the grandma’s table

When I was a little guy


Blue eyes got big

My smile grew wide

Watching her cut into

That black raspberry pie


Thick and smooth

No seeds inside

That big dip of whipped cream

Was hard to hide


My visits were always special

Put a sparkle to her eye

She loved watching her grandson

Eat her black raspberry pie


No need to wait till dinner

She knew I couldn’t wait

So from the fridge she took the pie

And put a big slice on my plate


Bing photo

Our dVerse poetry prompt for today is the word visit… A poem any style with the word visit in it.  Be sure to visit this site: https://dversepoets.com/

This is a revision from an earlier poem I had done.




When we landed in Edmonton, the temperature was -17 C. Coming from North Carolina, this was quite a shock. Breathing felt like I was trying to freeze my air sacs. We enjoyed that Christmas with family and friends We even got used to the cold temperatures. The crystals that formed on the kitchen window were fabulous. This poem is a Quadrille of 44 words that reflects on that winter in Canada.

City lights twinkle

In darkness twenty below

Shoppers rush to stores

Arms full cheeks aglow

Christmas Eve arrives

Must find one last gift tonight

Boots laced to the top

Wool scarf around my neck tight

Step into the wind

New snow crunches under foot


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Posted for dVerse Poets – Quadrille -44 word post with the word, CRUNCH.
Hosted by De Jackson.  This is my first Quadrille.

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Earth’s Sleeping Giant


Visiting the ocean is like visiting a sleeping volcano! No one expects either to blow when we are looking from the edge. But, the ocean like the volcano should never be taken for granted. They can both erupt with tremendous power in a very short time. I wrote this poem when Hurricane Matthew came blowing up the coast. The Sleeping giant rolled over and woke up for a time and those in its path paid the price.

The Sleeping Giant

A Sleeping Giant

Lies breathing between continents

In and out its chest rises and falls

A Shrek of a guy most of the time

Children and adults float

Bouncing on his crest

Squealing with delight

On bubbles of air

But beware

Of the Ides of October

When tossing and turning

Nightmares return

Thrashing coughing

Scaring all who once played on his chest

Fear and trepidation

Waters rise

Winds howl

Floods come up

Big Blow AKA Matthew

Brings Halloween early

All Tricks

No Treats


Photo: Dwight L. Roth


Joy and Happiness


Nothing brings me joy and happiness more than being with my grandchildren. It is such a great thing to watch them grow and turn into young adults. Joy and Happiness are two words that are often shared during the Christmas Holiday Season.  It is interesting in the story of the angels coming to the shepherds, the message was not one of happiness, but of Great Joy. Happiness is dependent on circumstances, while I believe joy is something that fills the soul. Joy is more enduring, and can be felt even when things do not go the way we wish. It is always good when we can experience both.

Joy and Happiness

Happiness is a little bird
Perched on the rail
Right within my grasp
Only to fly away
The moment
I reach out to take hold of it.
Joy is the blood
Pumping through my veins
A constant rhythm of rejuvenation
Not something to be possessed
Rather something to be
Joy is what keeps my soul alive



Stealing Christmas

In the Charlotte area, criminals are stealing packages from people’s porches. They drive through neighborhoods looking for boxes left by FedEx or UPS and then run up to the house and swipe the package and take off. The evening news broadcasts have aired warnings to those who expect packages to take precautionary measures to hide the boxes being delivered.

Stealing Christmas

The Grinches are stealing Christmas

One gift at a time

It seems they care not for children

Their brains are made of slime

In Dr. Seuss there was only one

Seems they’ve cloned him a hundred times

Sneaking up on your front porch

Stealing your packages and mine

What nasty sorry creatures

Those Grinches have become

A nuisance in the neighborhood

They steal from old and young

From house to house they go

Following FedEx block to block

Hoping to score a big one

When they rip open that box

There is a place where Grinches go

Not to hell, though we don’t know

But there is a cell at the local jail

That will box them up quite well


Grinch : Bing Free Clip Art


Beauty in the Broken

Lynns ceramic

Brokenness is another way of reinventing ones self. Sometimes when the hard knocks of life shatter our plans for the future destroying our self-image, it helps to realize that this is not the end, but rather the beginning of new and greater things.

Beauty in the Broken

Look for beauty in the broken

For out of the shards of glass

Comes a beautiful mosaic

More spectacular than the original…

A healing of brokenness

Forever cemented together…

The pieces of anticipation

Broken, yet whole once more


Ceramic Mosaic: Lynn Carmichael

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