Oh No!!

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Seeing our grandson for the first time since before Covid-19 created personal celebration in our minds. He and my son came down from Virginia on the Tuesday after Christmas.

We planned a big turkey dinner and invited our other son and family to join us. All was going well with the preparation. The Turkey was put in a browning bag to bake. Soon after it started baking, my wife realized she had forgotten to put the rack under the turkey to keep it up off the pan.

Carefully we pulled the hot turkey out of the oven. With big oven gloves, I lifted the turkey, and she slid the rack under it, That is when everything went South!

I pushed the broiler pan with the turkey back into the oven. The only problem was I did not push the oven rack back with it!! The turkey and the pan dropped off the back edge of the oven rack and wedged against the oven wall. The bag began to melt into the turkey!

Frantically we retrieved the turkey, moved it onto the sink counter, and we took it out of the melted bag. The heat of the oven wall melted the bag into the turkey’s skin. I carefully cut the damaged skin off the turkey, and we put it into a new browning bag. We were putting it back into the oven just as my son and grandson walked in the door.


supersedes cooking faux pas

Foul turkey gobbled!

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse, Lisa asked us to write a Haibun about some aspect of our holiday celebration. I decided to share one of a few faux pas that occurred over our Christmas celebration.

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com

Christmas Salvia

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A few weeks ago, we had a heavy frost that killed off most of my red salvia along my front walk. This was followed by a couple of weeks of unseasonably warm weather. I was surprised to see new green leaves coming out at the base of the plants I had broken off.  Two of the last plants near the sheltered door did not freeze. They kept on blooming and some of the frosted one grew enough to bloom as you see in the top photo.

Christmas Salvia

Blooming in spite of the Frost

Santa will bring coal/cold

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Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Light a Candle


Light a Candle

This is my watercolor painting from this afternoon. The warm weather we have been having has been great for painting in my garage.

Winter days grow dark

Cursing the darkness won’t help

Just light a candle

Painting: Dwight L. Roth

No Room at the Inn

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Travelers came knocking on the door of the inn
After traveling all day tired, hungry, and thirsty.
The donkey needed fed // they needed a bed
A full inn afforded them nowhere to lay their heads.
Pregnant Mary needed a place to deliver.
Water broke // waves were coming on strong.
No time to look elsewhere for a private room.
The inn was no place for a delivery room.
Travelers standing around gawking at the sight
Of a newborn baby coming ready or not.
The kind Innkeeper suggested, “Perhaps the stable…
A private place to deliver away from prying eyes?”
The animals provided warmth from their exhales.
He did what he could to make them comfortable.
Brought water and a blanket as Mary screamed in pain.
He was not the villain in this story as portrayed.
Rather a compassionate keeper avoiding gossip’s scandal.
Why do we think they should have been entitled?
Unknown travelers from afar // they had no reservations.
Thankful for a private spot, it all came about
A child was born in private, and would soon,
In the course of time, change the world.
A Savior who is Christ the Lord!


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

This a Christmas poem I wrote last year, which I am reposting again this year. It is a different perspective on the Nativity.



We called them icicles

and hung them on the tree

Silver threads of shiny tinsel

came in plastic packs of three

An accent for colorful lights and balls

making any Christmas tree sparkle

Even Charlie Brown’s sad tree

needed some silver tinsel on it

Today at d’Verse, Mish asked us to write a 44 word Quadrille using the word, Tinsel. Tinsel used to be a common decoration on Christmas trees when I was a child. Not so much anymore!

join us at: https://dversepoets.com

Charlie Brown picture from bing

Putting up memories


This is the first time in ten years that we have done all the decorating ourselves. The grandchildren not have other pursuits and are grown and busy, so we spent the morning digging up memories as we sorted through our tub of ornaments from my school children of past years and of friends and co-workers. It was fun to revisit each one again and try to recall who gave them to us or where we purchased them.

So many memories

revisited each Christmas

Each one hung with joy





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~Merry Christmas~

Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Christmas is a State of Mind

I am very pleased to announce that my poem, Christmas is a State of Mind, has been included in the Old Mountain Press Holiday Cheer Anthology. I want to thank Editor, Tom Davis, for including my poem in this anthology. You can read the poem below.

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When I think of Christmas
I am carried to that special place
hidden somewhere in the past
Christmas is a state of mind, you know
those childhood memories
packed away in boxes, like decorations
brought out to celebrate the season
Christmas is a time when a tune or a song
will open the window of my mind
to images seemingly forgotten, yet vividly clear
Music does that, you know
The song always remembers
Christmas is that feeling of reliving
school days, of pictures to color
decorations on the wall…
recalling church programs with four-line
recitations dressed up as Mary and Joseph
with the baby Jesus in a manger
and frightened shepherds and Wise Men
Christmas is a feeling of comfort and joy
being loved and appreciated
singled out and given special gifts
remembering the smiles on people’s faces
The joy of giving and receiving
is what Christmas is all about…
God’s gift of love and grace to us
is now our gift to share with others
Christmas is a state of mind
lived out every day of our life.

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You can read all of the poems in this anthology by going to Amazon Kindle at:

Holiday Cheer: A Poetry and Prose Anthology

You can also order a hardcopy at: http://www.OldMountainPress.com

Buy Local

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With spending up and the supply chain clogged at the docks, perhaps we should think about buying local this year. It would be a big help to small business in our community. Perhaps downsizing our wish list would not be such a bad thing. Maybe we could focus more on what is really important at Christmas/Hanukkah. Enjoy your family and hug the ones you love! ( and, …maybe even the ones you don’t!!) 

Shipping containers

Stacked up on the docks this year

Buy local

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Decorating the Christmas Tree

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Grandchildren used to come after Thanksgiving
setting up and decorating our Christmas tree.
Our tree has lights already wound and entwined.
Decorations are memories of teacher gifts
given by students over the year // each one special.
When I was young, we never had a Christmas Tree.
You see, we spent each Christmas with our relatives
who lived four hours away in a big snowy valley.
There, they all had beautifully decorated trees;
Some even had lighted candles that danced and bubbled
Now most of the Grandchildren are grown and gone.
Only the two youngest ones came last year.
Funny how some things are only special to children
who still enjoy the rediscovery of each ornament
dug out of a big plastic tub that was stored in the garage.

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Today Dora was our host at d’Verse, and asked us to write a poem about an epiphany or pause in our Christmas comings and goings. It was to be something that creates a twist in our poem that takes the reader a different direction of thinking or reflection.

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com