Drink of Choice


Sip only the sweet Stuff
Why savor bitter gall;
making puckered faces…
spitting and sputtering…
when there is so much sweetness
all around?
Sipping is a choice we make.
Nourished from flower nectar;
Imbibing acid laced words.
What is your drink of choice?


Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Today is Quadrille (only 44 words) Monday at d’Verse Poets Pub. The prompt today is sip! Lillian asked us to take it any direction we chose. In light of all the negativity in our country today, I chose to look at it from the perspective of where we find satisfaction; from positive people or negative ones. I had a cocaine addict once tell me everyone has their drug of choice!  For some, it is listening to other people spout their gossip and negativity. What is your drug of choice??

Winter Reflections (a Sonnet) 2


A sonnet consists of 14 lines structured into two parts. The first part gives an “argument” and the second part a “solution” separated by a “volta” (a turn), in the italian sonnet the argument consists of the first octet leaving the last sextet for the resolution.  Today at d’Verse Poets Pub, Bjorn introduced us to different forms of the sonnet. I am attempting to write my first Italian sonnet. It includes my thoughts on aging in this winter time of my life.


Jilly asked us to use enjambment, which is punctuation that reflects the meaning we want to project. This is my revised version with punctuation added.

In this gray, leafless winter time of life;
When reflection dominates my thinking;
And, age blankets memory; snowy, cold, twinkling;
Covering over old pain, hurt, and strife.
Forgetting past, and sometimes the present,
I contemplate my future things to come.
Will old age smile on the end of my run;
Or, can I peacefully pass on content?
Life still goes on, independent of us,
New changes will come, without our consent;
All I can do is watch, and make a fuss;
But, if I have no choice about this chatter,
Why should I worry, or fret with resentment?
To stay, or leave, does not really matter.


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com

When I Think of Freedom


On the Fourth of July many think of freedom as the day we declared our independence from England. It may remind us of those who fought in the revolution and many wars since then. It may mean standing for the National Anthem or Saluting the Flag. But there is an even deeper meaning to freedom, without which all the others lose their significance. Freedom is an attitude, a choice, and a mindset that goes beyond the physical realm.

Freedom to walk with others

Protecting their dignity and pride

Freedom to have courage to speak

When injustice rears its ugly head

Freedom to show kindness

Without expectation

Freedom to believe and have faith

In the manner of our choosing

Freedom to forgive

Releasing hurt and pain

Freedom to say.  “I love you!”…

So memories of you will be good one!

Freedom is not physical // it’s a mindset

No one can take away from you


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Independence Day


Independence Day (a Haibun)

Perhaps our understanding of freedom and independence is skewed by misguided expectations. Our Republic was founded on the principles of freedom under law. The question becomes whose freedom and whose laws. It seems that every time there is a social push for change, the ensuing freedom comes with expectations that everyone will get on board. When that does not happen, then it (our newfound freedom) becomes means of control and forced compliance. Too bad we can’t just enjoy our freedoms without insisting everyone has to see things our way!

Independence Day

Freedom to control others

The way we see fit


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Frank Tassone asked us to look at the meaning Independence Day. What does it mean to be free and what are the necessities to remain that way. I believe we live in a country where the word freedom has been hijacked by those who want to control it. If that continues to happen we will no longer have a free society.

Join the Haikai challenge at:

#Haikai Challenge #40 (6/30/18): Independence #haiku #senryu #haibun #tanka #haiga #renga


Fresh Starts

EER_0188Each New Beginning
Each new beginning is like a hand in poker
In our new situation
We don’t want the joker!
Sometimes we are happy with the hand we receive
A hand full of Aces and Kings
or a winning full house
Filled with joy, happiness, and wealth.
But most times our new beginnings
are in need of some tweaking…
Some things need to be thrown out
While others we’ll be keeping.
New beginnings require shrewd wisdom
as much as luck.
Wise choices and good company
Keep us from getting stuck
While some new beginnings have been handed to us
Others take plenty of work and lots of effort.
Knowing when to hold
and when to fold is always a real plus.
So // accept the hand your dealt
Don’t keep looking for one better.
It’s not luck…
It’s your choices // that make you a winner
Few new beginnings //come up all Aces


Photo: Dwight L. Roth



Mish at d’Verse asked to share a Life Lesson that we have learned that might be helpful to someone else. I chose the urge to bail out and quit my job.

Back in the 90s, when I was still teaching school, I was feeling burned out and disillusioned with my job. I did an assessment and looked at what it would take to get another job that would pay me what I was earning as a teacher. With my boys starting college, it was not the time to bail out on my job. The only other option was to work on me! I finally came to this conclusion:

It is easier to change my attitude

Than to change my job

I found this also applied to my marriage as well…

It is easier to change my attitude

Than to change my spouse

I am sure there are other situations in life where this is applicable as well


Photo from family album!



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.


Broken Heart Tales


At d’Verse today, Bjorn ask us to try writing a poem using negativia.  This involves writing a poem using the negatives, or what hasn’t happened, instead of what has taken place.  This is a poem I wrote about falling in love, being rejected, and finally finding the love of my life!

You Were Not the One for Me

My heart broke when you left me

Devastated // crushed

Thought I would die

I did not know then

You were not the one for me


The second heartbreak // even worse

Our connection seemed so great

Until you left me and went back to him

Crushed again // I did not know

You were not the one for me


When I met you

I knew

You were the one the one for me

So beautiful // so full of life

Your sweet smile captivated me

Just think what I would have missed

If I had never met you

Almost fifty years ago


Photo: Dwight L. Roth




My good friend Bob left today

Truck all packed they drove away

Seems aging does things to mind and body

Making closeness necessary as we grow tottery

Children and grandchildren warm the heart

So we pack our things and soon depart

To live nearby //watered by their smiles

And have them close to help with our ills

My good friend Bob spent hours with me

Talking while I painted and sitting under the trees

His hearing was gone so his voice was loud

Scared some neighbors whenever he got riled

But with me // I didn’t mind his loud expressive pleas

We sat and talked on among tall acoustic trees

Talked of politics, stocks // everything in the book

Of those who were good //and those who were crooks

Over the years we grew quite close

Our trust and loyalty we both valued most

I will surely miss Bob and his booming voice

But my memories are good // I’m OK with his choice


Photo: Ruth Roth

Burning Star


Ever hitch yourself

To a shooting star

Only to find it’s 

A comet flying through space

A cold solid chunk of ice and rock

Living off shining reflections


Find yourself a star

Burning brightly

Full of passion //fire

Better yet… 

Be that shining star


Photo Dwight L. Roth

Monday Quadrille called for by Victoria at de’Verse~Poetry Pub. Today’s prompt is to use the work burn in a Quadrille. Come join us and read all of the great poems by our group.