What’s Your Sign

Signs seem to be an important part of our lives. I remember when people would ask each other, “What’s your sign?” This usually referred to the signs of the Zodiac. In our world we take signs for granted, including when to cross the street, or where to cross, what to watch out for, where not to turn, and so many more. We depend on signs to send us in the right direction, show our streets, or the roads we are riding on. One sign many ignore is that little box that says, “I read and understand the rules and policies for this App!” Overwhelmed we just click and go on.

Even more disturbing is our failure to read Nature’s signs… wear your mask, get your vaccine shots, our climate is changing, our world population is spiraling upward, pollutions is killing our environment, and many more. To borrow a quote from Bill Engvall, “Here’s Your Sign!”

Signs of the times speak

Humans fail to hear prophets

Living in denial

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

People and Trees

If people loved us like trees,

we would be loved unconditionally

in each season of our life…

finding comforting shade

in our towering strength

admiring our refined appearance

planted on a landscape of beauty…

and, in the Fall of life

they would make special effort

to come before Winter

to see all the magnificent beauty

of our changing foliage…

the myriad array of colors

that makes us special;

before they’re is gone

with the cold winds of change

and our balding head and limbs

put in brick boxes with windows

injected with composting material…

observed from time to time

as we slowly waste away.

Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Posting this for Open Link night at d’Verse Poets Pub.

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com

A Bud of Hope

At the base of each drying leaf

Is a bud full of life and potential

Waiting patiently for summer’s heat

Or winter’s cold to pass

Knowing Spring will bring renewal

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Remember…

Behind all that crushes you

Makes you feel devastated

Hopeless and distraught

Lies a bud of strength and potential

The creator’s promised hope

Waiting for you to recognize

That your spring has arrived

Once more

Photo: Dwighr L. Roth

Nature is my Muse

Today at d’Verse, Ingrid asked us to write a poem describing our muse. In the past poets were often inspired by a person who stimulated their imagination and brought life to their poems. My muse is Nature. One thing I enjoy as much as writing is getting a good nature shot. The bees and butterflies, birds and flowers all feed into my poetry in some way. When my mind goes dry, I can always count on my photo files to get my juices flowing.

Inspiration flows

from Nature’s muse to my thoughts

Honey of the mind

Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com

Aunt Betty’s Oyster Shack

Bing images~

My Aunt Betty grew up in the small town of Ware, Virginia right along Mobjack Bay, home of Ward Oyster Company. Aunt Bet, as friends called her, was a fine cook and specialized in fried oysters. People up and down the Ware River knew about Aunt Bet.

She was so popular that that she and Uncle Joe decided to open Aunt Betty’s Oyster Shack. It was a big success, with people lined up around the block to get a taste of her fried oysters, slaw, hush puppies, and sweet tea.

She could shuck those oysters faster than anyone I know. One day I asked her, if she was ever angry that God made her black. A broad smile crossed her face as she looked up at me and said, “No, I do not weep at the world; I am too busy sharpening my oyster knife!”

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Today at d’Verse, Lisa challenged us to write a prosery piece, that included the line: “No, I do not weep at the world, I am too busy sharpening my oyster knife!” from –Zora Neale Hurston, from “How Does it Feel to be Colored Me” in World Tomorrow (1928).

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com

I took my fictional setting from information I found on line about the Ward Oyster Company at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay. If you are interested you can read more about it below:

Ward Oyster Co. is one of the largest cage oyster farms on the East Coast of the USA, distributing their oysters all over the continental United States. Ward Oyster Co. has about 20 to 30 million oysters placed in cages near the mouth of the Ware River (our nursery) and in the heart of the Mobjack Bay (our grow out location). It is headquartered in the towns of Ware Neck in Gloucester County, and the town of Foster in Mathews county, both of Virginia. The Ware River is one of four rivers which feed the Mobjack Bay, all of which flow directly to and from the salty lower Chesapeake Bay.  Visit our online store for the best fresh oysters in the area.

The Silent Voice

In the recesses of the mind

Where reason and conscience lie

Right along side the knowledge of good and evil

There comes a sound // not in words

But a silent voice speaking to me

Not with scream nor shout

But with a still small (silent) voice

Heard above the noise of loud voices

Clamoring for my attention

Heard above the noise of city streets

Roaring trucks and honking taxis

Above social media smart phones

Spewing out trivial pursuits

The silent voice always there…

The other option

Some call it mystical

Others hear nothing

But I hear the silent voice of God

Speaking into my soul…

The voice that says, “I love you my child.”

“No matter what you might do,

I love you!”

“Be all you can be!”

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Reposting this one from 2019

Painting Peru (photo montage)

In 2014 some neighbors we met from down the street came by my house and said they saw me painting in the garage. They wanted to commission me to paint several small paintings for them. His wife was from Peru and wanted some mementoes of Peruvian art. They gave me some pictures they wanted painted and I said I would try. After a couple of weeks, I had them done. They were pleased and I was happy to get a paid painting job. I don’t remember all the names of the objects. Perhaps you might know. One was a famous beach and another was a famous canyon, as deep or deeper than the Grand Canyon.

Peruvian Art

Meaningful home memories

Paintings on the wall

Paintings: Dwight L. Roth

Cicada’s First Song

Claws firmly attached, it hangs on to my old bird house wires being swallowed up by the willow tree! Seeing it hanging there was a most interesting sight. I wasn’t sure at first if it was alive or not, so I tapped it and found it hollow. The cicada, or seventeen year locust comes up out of the ground every seventeen years, usually attaching itself to a tree, and bursts out of its shell. Then it sings with his wings trying to attract a mate. Ours are usually green in color and about twice as big as the original shell. This one is a photographer’s dream shot. I was very excited to see it hanging there.

Cicada shell sways

Remnant of its dark past life

My bird house long gone

*

Hollow memories still hang on

Cicada sang its first song

Aimless Wandering/Wondering

Today I watch a big black ant

wander aimlessly through crags

and valleys of the willow bark.

Energetically he goes up and down

zipping along with great agility…

Nothing much being accomplished

from my point of view.

I wonder what he is thinking

during his mindless wandering.

As I watched, a little white dot

started moving up the crags as well

No bigger than pencil point,

he starts his upward climb…

stopping at times // becoming

a white dot on the tree once more.

And then there is a tiny creature

I had not seen before…

about the size of the chunk of wax

the nurse washed out of my ear,

perfectly camouflaged to match

the tree bark.

He began his upward move

climbing along the lifted grooves

of bark and pausing to explore.

Whatever he is finding is smaller

than my eye can see.

Perhaps little microbial creatures

lodged under the bark…

The perfect meal for a bug

that looked like a Star Wars machine!

Photos: Dwight L. Roth