If the World were the Olympics

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If the World were the Olympics

We would all strive to win

We would compete without malice

Each country striving to be the best

Loving the challenge including all

Driving forward into the future

A hand reaching out when others fall

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Coming back together again and again

To again challenge one another

To become the best we can be

Winning and sharing the joy

Losing and coming back again

Calling all nations of the world

To come together as one

Each one working

To make the world a better place

One for all and all for one

The Peaceable Kingdom

Where war and terror are long forgotten

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Photos: NBC Sports web photos

Broken

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Broken

Perspective is everything in life. I have always been one to pick up objects that people put out on the street and take them home to fix.  I see treasures where others see junk. Today I finished a project given to me by a friend. This guitar was dropped and broken and about to be thrown in the dumpster when they remembered me. The fixer of broken things. I think of this in relation to life and my relationship with God. I am glad God does not trash us when we are broken. Read the poem to see how it turned out.

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Broken

What do you see when something is broken

An object to discard

Or an object restored

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Half-full or half-empty

Perspective is everything

Affects all of life

We all become broken

At some time in our life

Thinking we are beyond repair

But God sees us otherwise

And restores us with his grace

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His perspective

His Love

Are always there

We always have our place

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Photos and guitar repairs and painting: Dwight L. Roth

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Note: (I published this when I first started my blog last summer. Only a few of my followers got to see it so I am reblogging it again. Hope you like it!)

Photos and guitar repair work: Dwight L.Roth

 

Opposites Attract

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Why are we still together after all these years? I  heard a song that says, “Love will keep us together..” But, I believe it takes more than love. The things that attract at the beginning of a relationship often become the things that irritate us later. I would contend that it takes more than love to keep us together. Read my poem and find out.

Opposites Attract

Amazing how we’re wired

Opposite poles you and me

Attracted for a lifetime

Stuck with each other

In the best way possible

Love, hate, stresses and joys

All because we are so different

Sometimes in sync

At times all turned around

Sometimes like cats and dogs

At others like two peas in a pod

Underlying this oppositeness

A foundation of commitment

Superseding anything our oppositeness brings

Entwined like the roots on the forest floor

Strength in the time of storm

Blooming together joyfully in the sunshine

God ordained

Love without end

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Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Home is a Feeling

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It wasn’t long after we moved to Western North Carolina that I knew I was home. I did not grow up here, but I knew the feeling. This was home. Living in the country  and driving through the farm land on back country roads gave me that feeling of South Western Pennsylvania where I was born. The rolling hills, the Oak and Hickory trees and the endless corn fields all felt right. This was home.  I wrote the words to this song soon after moving here.

Home is a Feeling

Home is a feeling you’ll know when you’re there

No matter how far you go no matter where you’ve been

That feeling slips in and lets you know…

Home is a feeling when you’re there

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When you’re driving through the cornfields down a long and duty road

And you see the evening sun sinking slowly out of sight

That feeling slips in and lets you know…

Home is a feeling and you’re there

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When you’re far away and all alone wondering how long you’ll be gone

And a song comes on the radio it takes you back and you’re right there

That feeling slips in and lets you know…

Home is a feeling and you’re there

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Though mom and dad are gone and the old house stands no more

The place is still just as real you can feel their presence there

That feeling slips in and lets you know…

Home is a feeling when you’re there

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When you’re loved by those around you and they all reach out to you.

Nothing else matters now… You can see it in their smiles.

That feeling slips in and lets you know…

Home is a feeling when you’re there

Roots

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Paul Simon and Art Garfunkle had a hit song that said, “I am a rock, I am an island. For a rock feels no pain and an island never cries…”  The isolated aloneness of this song makes me say, “No that’s not me!”    I cannot imagine living without my family roots.  They give me a sense of history and a set of values, morals and faith that I have drawn on all my life.   I believe roots are necessary whether they are birth family, an adopted family, or community of faith. Life must be very lonely  without connection to our roots.

Roots                                

Without roots

We are pulled weeds

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Tossed in the pathway of life

Rooted out

Sometimes by our own choosing

Or pulled from family gardens

Thrown onto the pathway of life

By cynicism and judgement

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To be trampled underfoot

But our roots can still grow

Alone in the hard cracks of humanity

Rising again and again

To bloom one last time

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Courageous strength

Refusing to dry up

In the pathway of life

No matter what comes our way

Without embedded roots

We are only  tumbleweeds

Dust in the wind

In a desert of humanity

 

Shipwreck

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Our boys loved going to Nags Head, NC to spend time on the beach. The old Ship Wreck is an interesting attraction. It would come and go in the sand depending on how many hurricanes we had that season. We always looked at this massive hull and wondered what must have happened. I decided to write this poem to give my version of the events that left it buried in the sand all these years.

Shipwreck

Old ship bones lie buried and rotten

Reflecting a story that’s long forgotten

Symbol of strength

Pride of the ocean

An ill fate soon to be gotten

Flag blowing from the high mast

White billowing sails

Long days on the wide open ocean

Casting their fates t’will soon be too late

As the sun goes to sleep without motion

Port of call on islands across the Caribbean

With many wild stories to tell

Rum and Sugar and maybe some gold

With pirates hot on their tail

Drinking sweet rum in the late evening sun

Singing songs of women with assets

Dead heads in the morning pounding their skulls

Trying to find a way to get past it

Red sky that morning gave an ominous warning

Of danger north of Hatteras

Straight into the gale without any quale

She drove as the storm came at us

If they’d been there before we don’t know for sure

They surely did not remember

Since they rode without fear on this ghost ship of death

Into the ill-fated storm of September

Gargantuan waves crashed over the bow

Drowning out the sailors’ last cry

Cargo and ship sank into the dip

As the cane of September swept by

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Pounded and broken the ship in a swoon

Without sailor or cargo or sail

Everything had been cast the ship heaved its last

To lie in its grave in the dunes

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For the next hundred years entombed in the sand

It took its rest without moving

Until a cane of October

Came washing over

Leaving open its coffin for viewing

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Now families with children climb high on the dunes

Assuming but never knowing

Ships’ bones tell no tales

That’s left to me

And my imagination’s still growing

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Photo and painting by Dwight L. Roth

Photo of old shipwreck near Nags Head, NC

 

Waiting to Die

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Waiting with my wife’s mother as she came to the end of her life stirred many strong feelings. She had been diagnosed with a  terminal brain tumor ten months earlier. As I sat and reflected on her life and my life, I began to ponder the end of life. Some die quickly and others live on sometimes in chronic pain, while for others the pain may come from the emotional part of our being. This poem looks at the end of life stages and how they affect us.

Waiting to Die

Becoming obsolete is one of life’s most difficult burdens

It is not something that comes on quickly

But rather happens over a few years

When things once held dear are no longer valued by the next generation

It raises a turmoil of the soul that at first kicks and screams

But gradually subsides into a churning rumble

Only to be followed by a great dull ache

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Becoming physically challenged only adds to the burden

Our bodies slow down, wear out, won’t co-operate, get repaired,

Bounce back at times only to slowly head back down the slippery slope of time

That waits for no one but seems to careen wildly toward the cliff

This too raises the turmoil of the soul that at first kicks and screams

But gradually subsides into that churning rumble

Only to be followed by a great dull ache and a swell of physical pain

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Becoming physically and/or mentally disabled increases the burden even more

When one can no longer care for himself

Or have the strength to move about

Losing the memory to recall life’s joys and sorrows

Or that unwanted friend and companion arthritis moves in and out

One begins to wonder why he continues to go on living

Now it’s just a long dull ache, for the inner kicking and screaming now subsides

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Becoming totally dependent, sometimes unable to speak or function

Is probably the biggest burden of all

Long hours of little change of position or surroundings

Struggling for life with each difficult breath

Simply sitting or lying, waiting day after day

For the edge of the cliff to appear

Must make one wonder why some leave this world like the drop of a hat

While others continue on and on simply waiting to die

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But what of heaven and the future life to come

Surely that should make it all better

Surely that should ease the pain of separation and loss

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When all you know is the life you are living and the pain you are feeling

It is difficult to focus on what will come

In the present suffering one may understand what lies in store

But only feels the last pains of separation

From this earthly body into an immortal one

Safe in the arms of God

Reincarnation

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I enjoyed watching swimmer Michael Phelps and his team mates winning their gold medals at the summer Olympics in Rio. He says this will be his last Olympic competition.  After winning 23 gold medals in his career, what does he do for follow up.  Being only in his thirties, he has over half of his life ahead of him. If he is going to survive retirement, he will need to find a way to reinvent himself. This is my own personal idea of retirement reincarnation

Retired!

When the cheers die down

The last race is won

My life’s work complete

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What now?

Time for reincarnation

A change of direction

A new challenge

A little slower pace

A bigger smile on my face

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No need to assume it’s over

The Rocking Chair can wait

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There is new life in reincarnation

Not as great

Not as loud

Rewarding just the same

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My work does not define me

I am defined by reincarnation

My choices make all the difference

Ebb & Flow

Her Eyes

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You may have heard the saying, “the eyes are the windows to the soul.”  I believe this is especially true when it comes to love relationships. A reciprocal response does not always ring true.  But, you can almost always tell what is genuine when you look someone in their eyes.

“I love you,” she said

She smiled with her mouth

 But not with her eyes

It was then I knew her heart

No home for me there

“I love you! she said

Smiling at me from ear to ear

With big brown eyes

Genuine and true

Her heart reserved

A place for me

And her eyes said it all

 

Red Tail Hawk

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When a Red Tail Hawk landed on my rail, I had to get a photo. It sat there looking at me as I eased my way out the sliding door and down onto the steps shooting photos. I decided to write an acrostic poem about my experience.

Red Tail Hawk resting on my deck rail

nothing to do but primp and fluff

Eying me carefully as I pull back the screen

wondering what’s up

Drawing me in with his watchful eye

as the shutter clicks and birds fly by

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Tell me big red what are you thinking

as you enter into my world

Are you not afraid

but then why would you be

I am the one with reservations

as I enter your space totally aware

Long talons could do great damage

to my face. my arms, my body or my hair

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How long will you sit there staring at me

through that emerald cast eye

Am I friend or foe will it be fight or flight

as I slowly creep by

Will you leave undaunted by my stare

looking for doves from your perch up there

Keeping me always in your gaze

as you walk my runway rail

fluffing and primping your red tail

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