Blank Stare Eyes

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Blank Stare Eyes

There is a lot of noise // I can see the commotion

Behind those blank stare eyes

You look at me like I don’t exist

But I can see your mind is still working

Don’t give it away // don’t let me know

But I know there is more that you’re thinking

I’m not quite sure// the message is unclear

Exactly what you are saying

As you look right through me

There’s more that you’re telling me

Behind those blank stare eyes




Power Trip

sea gull


O how we value being in control

Knowing we alone affect an outcome

Absolutely sure we’re unquestionably right

Even when we’re wrong

O how we value composure

Keeping that strained pained smile

Even in the face of the most obnoxious

Pretending actions do not offend

O how we value knowing

Never asking for help

Ignoring the urging to ask

Believing though lost // we still know

O how we value pretenses

Be it wealth, skills, or the perfect marriage

Never let our weakness show

Always well put together smiling

O how we value affirmation

Selfies on Facebook // time after time

Promoting our accomplishments

Never satisfied // always seeking more


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Today is Open Link hosted by Kim at d’Verse. She shared her fascination with seagulls and suggested if we needed a prompt, we could use seagull. Otherwise we are free to post a poem of our own choosing.  Come visit us at d’Verse~Poetry Pub.  Click the Mr. Linky box to read poems from the writers.

When Robots Rule the World

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Top of the Chain

Since robots don’t eat // are they part of the chain

When transformers rule the world

Just metal, wire, and silicone chips…

All put together with intelligent blips…

When robots rule the day?

Imagine the day when humans can say

They are no longer the top of the heap

Would they, like we, instinctively prey

Making us run for our lives to keep

Would their drones attack your house//your home

Would they grab us when we’re all alone

Would they be like us // attack, kill, and maim

On those further down the food chain

Would they transform into killing machines

Just like their creators have been

Created in our image // what more could they do

Than become just like us… me and you

A scary time it surely will be

When Robots rule the world


Robot clip art:


Paradigm Shift


Co-dependence can be very destructive to relationships. In marriage, when one partner expects their partner to fit into their plans and their schedule, it isn’t long before tension and conflicts develop. For the co-dependent partner it is a major paradigm shift to learn to live with, but somewhat independent of the other person. Today at d’Verse, Amaya is asking us to write a Pentimento poem, which derives from the Italian meaning  for repentance. It is to show how one can change their way of thinking in a way that makes life more positive for all. This is my story.

Paradigm Shift

Committed for life// together we stood

Taking our vows that day

Smiles on our face // stars in our eyes

When opposites commit,  fire sometimes flies.

One holds on the other wants space

A head on collision in the race

Trains not always riding on the same tracks


Co-dependence can be overwhelming

I thought togetherness meant doing everything together

I learned independence is sometimes better

Struggling // I pushed off on my own

Not always expecting reciprocation.

Creativity emerged I had not expected


Life is much better now that I’ve reflected

Togetherness may mean riding parallel tracks

Commitment may mean traveling in the same direction…

Leaving co-dependence behind…

Maintaining each ones identity and self-worth


Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Come join us at:

Hometown Smokin’

Coke ovens painting

Rows of beehive coke ovens dotted the hillside belching out black smoke. At night they looked like rows of jack-o-lanterns glowing orange on the hillsides above the mines. Coke is coal that is half burned to get the gasses out. When it is reburned in the steel mills, it burns much hotter than coal. Ovens burned day and night when I was a small boy, growing up in Masontown.

Masontown, Pennsylvania, nestled in the Pennsylvania Mountains, is about an hour from Pittsburgh and almost that far from Morgantown, WVA. The region around Masontown had rich bituminous coal deposits, with some veins up to nine feet thick. The town lay just above the Monongahela River, which transported the coal and coke on flat barges to the steel mills in Pittsburgh.

Around the town and along the river, were rows and rows of houses called patches. They were built by the coal company, along with a company store that sold just about everything. It was a very hard life and many people literally owed their soul to the company store.  Each patch had a coal mine and rows of block and brick ovens, where the coal was converted to coke and loaded on barges or train cars. Tennessee Ernie Ford’s song, Sixteen Tons, was about this kind of life.

Coke ovens // long gone

Black lungs residuals stay

Clean air // still they choke


Painting of Coke Ovens: Dwight L. Roth

Today we were asked by Mish, at d’Verse Poetry Pub, to write a Hai bun about our hometown. This includes up to three paragraphs of pros followed by a Haiku that compliments the pros. This is my story.

You can look up the song Sixteen Tons on YouTube.

Dead Stop


This is the second time a dove has crashed into my window. The tinted windows act like a mirror. This one was totally blindsided and hit the window going at full speed. It shocked me to hear the thud. I looked up, surprised to see it flying off, instead of falling to the ground with a broken neck. It left a full body oil print on my window. Doves have amazing resilience. It reminded me of the way our country is going. When we hit dead stop, will we too have the resilience to bounce back once more? Only time will tell.

Dead Stop

Cruising full speed ahead

Pathway clear // only background trees

Mirage of glass // a clear deception

Unexpected collision // DEAD STOP!!



Lightning pain surge

Recalculating reality in split seconds

Turning // flying off to a nearby limb

Stunned  // dazed // confused

The path of deception was clear

Only a dead stop brings a wakeup call

Leaving imprints // taking bruises

Concussion collision survived

Learning through “hard knocks”

The dove phoenix rises once more


Photos: Dwight L. Roth


The Color of Spring (a Haiku)


Finch sports gold feathers

Wearing the color of  spring

Warm weather not far

I was very surprised today, to see a goldfinch at my feeder with his new feathers. Most still have their drab winter look, but this one really lived up to his name. I could not pass up a chance for a good shot in the long rays of the afternoon sunlight. A good sign for sure, that spring is just around the corner. While out working in the yard, I saw one of the drab looking ones in the bush next to me. I could see his red tuft on top of his head that he uses to get the female’s attention.  They are amazing little creatures!







Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Mom’s 93rd Birthday

Mom and the boys June 16 -07 001

She Turned 93 Today (6/07)   (A Ghazal Poem)

Her breathing’s hard //Her spirit’s strong… She’s still not ready to go
She turned 93 today, 93 today.. She’s still not ready to go

With a century of memories still sharp in her mind …
She still remembers everything…She’s still not ready to go

Her face lit up //Her smile grew broad… Grandsons made her smile                                   Looked at pictures for a while… She’s still not ready to go

Fresh berries in a cup…She soon ate them up…
Time for lunch,  so up she got… She’s still not ready to go
She turned 93 today // Weak in body //strong in spirit
Mom turned 93 today // And she’s still not ready to go!


A Tribute my Mom Beatrice Roth who turned 93 July 16, 2007
It was my last visit with her before she died in August

Our challenge for this writing came from Paul at d’Verse, who asked us to write a ghazal poem in Arabic form with couplets and repeats at the ends of the lines throughout the poem. This is new to me, so I hope this is close to what was expected.  I revised a poem I wrote in memory of my last visit with my mother, on her birthday in 2007.

A Snowy Day (A Hai bun)


One of most beautiful things to watch is snow falling on a winter day. We had a snowfall a couple of weeks ago that left everything covered with a  coating of about four inches of white snowflakes. Watching the snow fall is like a day at the beach, very therapeutic. Today I am sharing with you some of the short lived beauty of  our winter snowfall. Enjoy!!

Dancing flakes of ice

Getting their fifteen minutes…

Knowing clock’s ticking











Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Super Moon


The Super Moon was up early. Before the sun went down this guy was already sneaking up trying to hide in fading daylight.  I drove downtown thinking I could get the  moon shining against the buildings. The only thing I got was bright setting sun and a faded moon. Later in the evening as the sky darkened the moon shone bright. These are my photos.







Photos: Dwight L. Roth