Big Valley Pennsylvania (Travel)

Horses and buggies can be found clopping up and down the roads of Kishacoquillas Valley in Central Pennsylvania. Big Valley lies between the towns of Lewistown and Huntingdon. It is the home of a great number of Amish and Mennonite Farmers, who, along with many others farm, this beautiful valley. People there refer to their home as Big Valley. It is the home of many of my ancestors on both sides of my family. It is one of the most beautiful places in the country. These are a few of the sights you might see on a visit there.

Memories and roots

grow deep in rich black soil

Ancestors rest here

My mother’s home
My father’s home
The Crossroad

A Taste of November

I can still remember, like it was yesterday

Fall in the woods where I grew up

Cold weather closed in early

Leaves in the woods

Turned shades of yellow, orange, red, and brown

What was once a lush woods

Filled with green hollow stemmed weeds

Now becomes blanketed

With a soft silent coating of leaves

The Silver Maple and Butternut next to the house

Dropped their yellow-tan leaves

The quince turned yellow-brown

As the apple trees added color to the scene

With rich deep red leaves…

On the driveway black walnuts still in the hulls

Driven over with car tires

Squishing and shelling

Picking them up, peeling off the excess

While blends of saffron, amber, and walnut stains

Are left on my hands and under my nails

From driveway to furnace room

Down in the basement

The nuts are carried to be dried

Cracked with hammer and brick

I walk through the woods,

With a borrowed single-shot 12 gauge,

Looking in the pit holes for rabbits,

Flushing out a ring-necked pheasant

From the edge of the corn field

Life was simple then,

Rabbits shot were few and pheasants even fewer

But walking through the woods and fields

Was an experience I enjoyed

Just for the sake of being there

The November woods remained stark and bare

For the rest of the winter,

But it’s passing and recurring beauty

Left indelible impressions…

Sometimes I wish I could be there once again.

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse, Sanaa asked us to were a poem about November. I decided to rework a poem I wrote several years ago about Fall in the Woods where I grew up.

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com

Beauty from Brokenness

Brokenness and humility

….can be the first step to restoration and beauty!

I am sharing this post to show that even the broken can be restored and what others throw in the dumpster can become treasures. This guitar was about to be tossed at the Habitat Restore where I volunteer. I got it and brought it home to work on. I saw it was a vintage guitar from 1937. I could not afford to have it totally restored, so I decided to do it myself and keep it as an art piece.

It was very badly damaged inside and out, but I managed to get it back together using plastic wood. I sanded it smooth and primed it for painting.

I wanted to paint a somewhat Spanish type design to reflect its origins. This is how it turned out. I then covered it with clear coating to preserve it. I was able to tune it up and it held together. It is now in my hallway as a decorative piece.

This rocker was taken from a pile of trash along the street back in the mid 1990s. It had no rockers and was cracked on the seat. The head piece was discolored from hear gel. I stripped the head and restained it. I fixed the seat and made new rockers from 2x4s. I embedded dowels into the legs so I could attach the rockers. We have had it in our home ever since. It sits very well.

This Esteban Guitar was given to me by a friend who had dropped it and busted the end as you can see. I used Bondo body filler to fill in the broken area. After sanding it down, I decided I would paint a picture on it to cover the damaged areas.

This is the end result. I was very pleased with the way it turned out. It played very well. I sold it to a lady who gave it to her daughter for Christmas so she could learn to play.

These are just a few of the many things I have rescued over the years.

Beauty in the Aging

Today a lone monarch visited my flowers, sucking out the last drops of nectar. I was excited to see it, since I didn’t see any all summer. The Yellow and Black Swallowtails were here, but no Monarchs. I got my camera and snapped away, as it enjoyed what is left of my Zinnias.

Summer has finally come to an end, and a lot of my flowers grew fungus and mildew on their leaves. The leaves deteriorated and dried up starting at the bottom and going up. But, with a couple of late summer rains, and a little watering from my rain barrels, my Zinnias continue to grow. I also have been cutting off seed heads as the flowers petals fall off. This stimulates them to keep putting out new buds. Although the bottom half of the stem looks dead the top continues to bloom. Some have now reached a height of almost eight feet! I see beauty in the flowers and also in the drying stems and leaves. It reminded me of the stages of life we all go through and that beauty can always be found even as we age and come to the end of life.

In the Fall of Life

beauty is found in aging

Blooms shine above pain

Photos taken today – Dwight L. Roth

Who Am I?

Doer of projects large and small… in and outside the box

Writer of poetry, theology, stories, and memoirs

Imaginative, creative // musician, and painter

Giver, helper, fixer, loyal friend // lover, and family man

Happy, hopeful, emotional, compassionate, and disillusionary

Truth seeker, lover of beauty // spiritual thinker

Sit with me awhile

Dialogue truth and beauty

Find spring in winter

Today at d’Verse we were asked to do a Selfie poem! This was one the hardest challenges yet. What does one say about themselves!?? It was very hard to decide what to share, so I did an acrostic and a haiku to sum myself up!

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com

Click on the Mr. Linkey box to read other poems.

Disappearing Footprints

The Oregon coast is a wonderful place to visit. We hiked down the long set of stairs to the beach below. An old man rested on the bench with his dog. He lives nearby and hikes down and up those stairs every day. A rest was needed for some of us at bottom and top. The ocean coastline with all its beauty also holds dangers of slipping and falling over the edge. Warning signs posted tell us to stay back. The breathtaking view makes it all worthwhile!

Hiking on the beach

Our footprints gone with high tide

Only sand remains

Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse Frank asked us to write a Monday Haibun using the word hike. A haibun is a short piece of prose followed by a complimentary haiku.

Last October we attended our niece’s wedding. While there we traveled to the coast and spent a couple of days enjoying the glorious view. My haibun today is about our time hiking on the beach.

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com

Butterflies Buffet

Every summer Butterflies arrive to enjoy my blooming flowers. Like travelers on the interstate, they stop and refresh themselves with nutrients to sustain them on their way. Leaving their eggs and chrysalises behind they carry on year after year. They are a joy to behold, as they flit from flower to flower probing for nectar in each tiny yellow stamen. All the while they pollinate my Zinnias for next years planting.

Nature’s bright colors

Displayed in shining glory

Butterfly buffet

Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Beauty on Beauty

There you were in the middle of my shot

Resting on a petal sunning yourself

Surfing all that beauty

Drowning in light

Reflecting every minute detail

Flawless yet simple

Elegant

An engineering work of infinitesimal design

A gift from the creator of all wonders

The image of excellence

Beauty on beauty

Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Note; I just received my copy of the new North Carolina Bards Charlotte Poetry Anthology this week. I am proud and honored that my poem, Cobwebs of the Blue Ridge, was included in this collection.

Miniature Tourists

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While traveling in  France, last summer, we enjoyed watching the children as they mingled with the tourists taking in the views. You can see their energy and enthusiasm in their actions and faces. We were like that once upon a time!

Old Medieval Colmar

Excited children wander/wonder

Cute little tourists

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Colorful umbrellas added a touch of sparkle to the town.

Photos: Dwight L. Roth