Midsummer Rains

Farm - Uncle Fred bailing hay 001

Midsummer Rains   (a Haibun)

During my teens, I worked for five summers on my uncle’s 100-acre Pennsylvania dairy farm. I loved being able to drive the tractors, long before I was old enough to drive a car. In mid-July we would make our second cutting of hay. We always tried to get it dry and into the barn between the midsummer rain showers.

baling hay

On occasion we would be racing across the field making our last round with the baler, watching the thunderheads rising above the mountain. The sprinkles started as we backed the hay wagon onto the barn floor. It wasn’t long until the rain would be drumming on the tin roof of the barn. It was a wonderful sound to hear.

Farmer baling hay

Midsummer rain coming fast

Drumming the tin roof


Family photos

For our Haikai challenge, Frank Tassone asked us to write about midsummer rains. Older calendars have summer starting in May, so by the end of June it would be mid summer. This took me back a few years to me time on the farm. Rain showers can be good or bad depending the circumstance, as you can see.

Farm - bring in the hay to the barn 001

#Haikai Challenge #39 (6/23/18): midsummer rain (samidare) #haiku #senryu #haibun #tanka #haiga #renga

Another perspective:

Midsummer rains fall

Bringing farmers liquid gold

Gold in many forms

Fun on the Water


While at Cain Creek this past weekend we were surprised to see this Amphibious Car come cruising down the lake. As we watched it circled and headed back across to the other side. Poetry in motion.

Sunday road trip

Became a dip in the lake

Great fun in the sunshine






Photos: Dwight L. Roth



There is much talk in the news about Anthony Bordaine taking his own life. The power of depression is such a great weight on a person’s life. The feeling of helplessness, lack of self-worth, and desperation makes death look like the only way to be free from the pain.

Sadly, many people choose the “…Nothing left to lose”, route. Celebrities, victims of abuse, and soldiers suffering from PTSD take their own lives. Even everyday people who find work and the stress of life overwhelming, sometimes choose this as their only option.

Treatment and support from others is another option. There is light at the end of the tunnel. The most important way to get help is to share with those who will understand. Family, friends, or a church group can walk with you. If you suffer from depression remember you are not alone. Reach out and get the help you need and find the freedom to live a long healthy life. I know this to be true. I have been there myself!


Nothing left to lose

Depression gnaws at your mind

Desperate thoughts of suicide


Dark night of the soul

Freedom comes in sharing pain

You are not alone



Song: Youtube

Bjorn at d’verse asked us to write a Haibun about some aspect of freedom. I choose to look at freedom from the mental health perspective.


One Day

Hibiscus 2

The hibiscus flower blooms only for one day then dries up.  I am amazed that such beauty is so short-lived. Yet it opens in all its splendid glory making the most of that one day in the sunlight. If you or I were only promised one day of life, would we stand out and shine? In reality one day is all any of us have to make a difference. There is no promise of tomorrow. Let your radiance shine as you live each day.


Intense deep beauty

Blooming only for a day

Summer’s gift to us

Just like the World Cup winners

Shining only for a day


Frank Tassone’s Hiakia challenge was to write a piece that alluded to the FIFA, the world cup championship games in Russia this week. Since I know nothing about the world cup, I will compare the winners to my beautiful hibiscus that blooms only for a day and then is gone. Only the photos remain to tell the tale!

#Haikai Challenge #37 (6/19/18): Fifa World Cup #haiku #senryu #haibun #tanka #haiga #renga

Photo: Dwight L. Roth


Webb’s Mill


Webb’s Mill like many others across the country no longer grinds flour and cornmeal for customers. This photo was taken in the 1980s. The mill has since gone into disrepair. Sad to see these great old landmarks disappear.

Webb’s Mill sits idle

Water still flows over the dam

Cornmeal grinding gone




Webb’s Mill at Spring Hope, NC: Dwight L. Roth – Photo and Painting




Clouds in Black and White

IMG_1545 clouds


My wife took these photos as we were returning home to Charlotte, NC this week. They were specular in color, but I wanted to see how they would come out in Black and White. I love the contrast that shows up in these thunderheads.  You could see the displaced anger boiling up inside these clouds. Can you hear the silent rumblings? What rage could stir up this much emotion?

Angry thoughts rise up

Thunderheads churn silent rage

Waiting to explode

IMG_1536 clouds

IMG_1551 clouds

IMG_1554 clouds

IMG_1600 clouds

IMG_1607 clouds

IMG_1609 clouds

Photos from iPhone SE: Ruth A. Roth

Frank Hubney, at d’Verse, asked us to write  a Haibun that refers to silent words. They could be words running through our head, or things we see that speak to us or inspire us. I chose to write about hearing what the clouds might be saying as these giant thunderheads form on the horizon. Come join us at d’Verse:


Waiting for Lunch


This painting of a lone egret was painted for our friend Jean, who lives in Alberta. I originally painted a large painting of the same scene. When she saw it she loved it, but it was too big to ship. So I painted a smaller one and packed it in between the clothes in my suitcase, when we traveled to Edmonton.  It is one of the few oils I have done. I usually paint with acrylics. The painting was still in tact when we opened the suitcase. She has it hanging on the wall in her kitchen, and enjoys it every day!

Patiently watching

Unseen critters provide lunch

Reflection follows


Egret Painting: Dwight L. Roth

Pushing summer


Spring rains this month have turned everything green. Gardens and fields are well established for the upcoming summer. My potatoes are coming along very well. It won’t be long until the heat of summer is upon us.


Spring rains bring lush green

Summer’s knocking at our door

Potatoes jumping


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Frank Tassone asked us to look at the transitions from spring to summer.

Check us out at:

#Haikai Challenge #34 (5/19/18): Passing Spring (yuku haru) … #haiku #senryu #haibun #tanka #haiga #renga

Just Walk On By


Without love we are most miserable creatures. But with love we can endure most any situation that comes along. While visiting a street fair in Virginia, we came across an older man playing his keyboard in the doorway of an abandoned building. His dog lay at his feet as he played. The tip jar held barely enough to get by.  It was obvious the love he and the dog had for one another. As my grandson put some money in his jar, this image left a lasting impression on me. Most people just walk on by on the other side of the street. He  probably experienced more loved than many of them.

Sweet notes in spring air

Gifts given // shared  // love received

“Love endures all things…”


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Quote from: 1 Corinthians 13

For Haibun Monday on d’verse, Xenia asked us to take an in-depth look at compassion. She suggested we look at the compassion in the compassionate and see how they connect with each other. This photo came to mind as a great example of that kind of compassion.

Come join us at d’verse: hppt://dversepoets.com

Running on Empty


This week my wife told me her car needed gas. She said it was almost empty. I asked her how close it was and she told me the odometer said it had a range of 15 miles! As I headed for the gas station I watched the miles click down to 11 when I finally reached the pump. I wonder sometimes, how many people live their live running on empty with only a range of 15 miles till everything falls apart.  Perhaps that is how we ended up in the great recession we experienced ten years ago.

Struggling to survive

Credit Cards filled to the max

Running on empty


Photo: Dwight L. Roth