When It’s My Time

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When it’s my time // let it be a celebration
Not down and sorrowful;
A reminder of all the good things life offered
And the things I chose to accept.
Let it be filled with music and guitars
Singing the old songs that stirred my soul.
Make it a time to remember the good times;
Stories shared that warm the heart.
Celebrate my passing with joy and happiness;
Friends and family coming together as one
Finding strength, joy, and hope.
Let tears mingle with laughter and song;
Knowing that I had a great life
Filled with great family and friends.
As my spirit rises to join the Spirit of God, my creator,
Know that life goes on // both here and there.


Photo: Dwight L. Roth


Halloween Pranks (flash fiction)


The following story is a mixture of truth and fiction. It was accepted to be in the upcoming Old Mountain Press anthology, Happy Holidays. This is a collection of poetry and prose from many significant contributors. Col (Ret.) Tom Davis is the publisher. He has written several books, and puts out poetry and prose anthologies three times a year. I have my works in several of them. Information about the website is at the end of this post. You can check out all of his E-books on Amazon Kindle.

Halloween Pranks
Dwight L. Roth
When I was in the fourth grade, the school I attended did not have indoor toilets! Behind our classroom building were three outhouses: a small one with a green door for the three lady teachers, a little larger two-hole one for the girls, and a similar one for the boys. The boys’ toilet had an L-shaped fence wall around it with a trough in the back where we could stand up and pee! We enjoyed seeing who could get their stream the highest on the wall!
You might wonder how Halloween and outhouses go together. Well, I heard tales of what teenagers do on Halloween; things like scaring little kids, stealing their candy, or throwing rotten eggs at people’s houses or cars! Those tales kept us only going to our neighbors and to people we knew! Unfortunately, that isn’t all teenagers do.
In the Fall of 1957, my friends I were excited to go trick-or-treating with our older siblings. A full moon shone down on us as we walked down our country road knocking on our neighbors’ doors. But, at the edge of town, where we went to school, more sinister actions were going on in the moon light!
The next morning, I arrived at school to a flurry of excitement. Children on the playground talked excitedly to one another, pointing to the back of the school. I soon found out what the excitement was all about. On Halloween night, some of the teenage boys pushed over the teacher’s toilet! As we, took our breaks during the day I looked in amazement at the little toilet with the green door lying there on its back.
In a day or two, the school maintenance men came and got it set back upright. I wondered how the teachers felt, having to use the girls’ toilet. They never did find out who tipped it over.

Check out Old Mountain Press here:   http://www.oldmp.com/e-book/#author

Out House Clip Art: https://i.pinimg.com

Twisted Earth

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People seem to like living on the edge. As the ocean continues to uncover the twisted Earth within, many still build as close to the edge as possible. Houses and Motels perch on the tops of cliffs, knowing full well, that it is only a matter of time until storm, earthquake, or upheaval will cast them into the sea! The Twisted Earth clearly tells its story. We seem to think it won’t happen to us!

In the cauldron of creation earth bubbled and groaned
Ocean floors found new plains above water
Magma and lava mixed with centuries of sediments
Creating geological hard-shell pigs in a blanket
Continents played musical chairs as the fiery magma spewed forth
Furious upheavals folded rock layers into broken saw-tooth ranges
Volcanic dust settled over the plains mixing with sediments
Forming rich black soil that still feeds us to this day
In the cauldron of creation, Earth still bubbles and groans
It is only a matter of time…. The cycle continues…

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Rock formations on the Oregon Coast – Photos: Dwight L. Roth


Who Sings?

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“Who sings in the deepest water in the abandoned lagoon?”
When the cool morning mist rises over warm Autumn waters;
Is there really a song, if no one is there to hear the singing?
“Who sings in the deepest water in the abandon lagoon?”
Where humpback whales hide and play, hidden from people;
Calling with sonic voices in the depths of deep water.
“Who sings in the deepest waters of the abandon lagoon?”
Is it not a mother calling to her calf, to swim close alongside;
As she dips and dives, singing whale lullabies in morning sunshine?
“Who sings in the deepest waters of the abandon lagoon?”
Perhaps it’s the bones of whales whose songs from long ago;
Echo from the darkest depths, up into the dark waters
of the abandon lagoon!

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Photos: Dwight L. Roth

We just returned from spending a part of this past week on the Oregon Coast. It was cool but beautiful. We looked for whales and enjoyed the fragmented coastline, as the waves came rolling in crashing against the rocks. While I was gone, I did not get to participate in the d’Verse poets prompts.
On Tuesday, Laura asked for a poem written with rhetorical questions. She asked us to pick a line from one of six different Pablo Neruda poetic questions and write our poem based on that line.
Today, Frank Hubney continues the challenge, introducing us to the term  Polyptoton, a rhetorical device which uses words with a common base, but in different ways. I attempted to combine the two prompts in my poem. I have also repeated the quoted line at the beginning of each stanza!

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com

Making a Difference

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Her gray hair that once flowed around her shoulders
Now pulled back tightly held with a stretch band;
There she sat in her wheelchair // her gaunt body fading
Wrapped in her shawl // holding her little doll on her lap.
As I read stories to the group of elderly residents
She sat with her head down // eyes closed as though asleep;
Yet somehow, I knew she is still listening to me.
I finished, and got out my twelve-string ovation guitar;
They enjoyed singing my old classics from the sixties…
A time when we all were young, and words sung told stories.
As I began to sing, “You are my sunshine…” her head began to move
Others joined in letting the song take them to another place and time.
Thought her body remained motionless, her feet now began to move;
Her soft pink slippers began a rhythmic pattern as she relived the days
When she danced, carefree to the music, with the one she loved.
Clutching her dolly, her eyes went from open to closed and open again
She rode the rhythms of each song in her mind, as feet danced
Pushing her wheelchair back to her unit she quietly said to me,
“I really enjoy that.”
It was then I knew I was making a difference!

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Anmol, at d’Verse, asked us to write a poem that uses description of a person that paints a picture of that person for the reader. I decided to write about one of the elderly persons who comes to hear my stories and songs at the local nursing home.

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com


Typewritten Pages

EER_0454 (2).JPGWords set in stones // not on a digital screen
Lasting impressions carved on paper for the ages
Black ink embossed on each page
Linking past intentions with present emotions
Digital words can disappear in an instant
Book’s printed pages can last for centuries

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Stamp Art: Dwight L. Roth

Self-Published Poetry Book

Our prompt for today’s Quadrille (44 Words) at d’Verse, is the word set, When I think of books, they are the next best thing to being “set in stone.”  I remember using a typewriter like this for many years, when I was still teaching school. I had to type really hard to make the keys cut through into the purple master.  Now everything is done in digital format, which can be lost at the click of a button. Call me old school, but I still like having hard copies to back me up! 

I have included my new self-published book of poems collected from the many poems written for my blog and for d’Verse.

Join us at: htttps://dversepoets.com

Fall Colors


The dry weather will affect the Fall colors around here this year. We have not had rain for over a month. Instead of turning yellow, the hickory trees behind our house are simply turning brown and dropping to the ground. The painting above will help us remember how colorful the Fall foliage can be.

Swimming colors blend

Red leaves drift down from the trees

Snow lays on the peaks

Painting: Dwight L. Roth

Frank Tassone’s Haikai challenge is to write a poem using Fall Colors as our prompt. I thought I would repost my painting showing the beauty of Fall colors.

Join us at: https://frankjtassone.com/2019/10/05/haikai-challenge-107-10-5-19-fall-foliage-red-leaves-momiji-haiku-senryu-haibun-tanka-haiga-renga/