Paint me in the Shadows

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When my time has come and I am gone

Take my ashes and paint me in the shadows

Under the oak tree where memories were made…

In the shadows with the fungi and let me watch it grow

And feel the coolness of the wind floating through the leaves


When my time has come and I am gone

Brush me smoothly under rocks of overhanging cliffs.

Paint me in the shadows where cool water

Trickles its way gurgling neath the trees

And deer quench their thirst on hot summer days


When my time has come and gone

Blend my ashes onto boardwalk pilings.

Paint me in the shadows where I can hear

Excited children walking as the waves roll in

Splashing in the shadows and rolling out again


When my time has come and gone

Take me to the farm I loved so long ago

Paint me in the shadows of the furrows

Of rich dark dirt to nourish alfalfa roots

growing green and tall in the summer sun


When my time has come and gone

Paint me in the shadows of garden rocks

Where Zinnias grow tall to shade me

While bees and hummingbirds come and go

And little Wrens keep me alert with their song


When my time has come and I am gone

And my pigment has turned gray

Paint me in shadows of your memory

and I’ll be here to stay


Posting for Open Link night at d’Verse Poets Pub. Some winter reflections.

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Winter Flowers

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Daffodils are one of my favorite flowers. The bulbs begin pushing through the ground in the heart of winter. Every warm day in January brings the shoots up higher and higher. By the first of February yellow heads are ready to pop open. They are short-lived, but are a hopeful reminder that spring is not far away.

Hardy green shoots

push up through cold winter leaves

Yellow blossoms shine


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse, Frank asked us to write a Haibun that uses a form of the word heart!

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An Odd Memento

Ovens of brick crumble, broken

Flames buried in the past


Echos of coke workers’ shovels

Smells of acidic smoke


Blackened brick reminds me of home

Rows of ovens glowing


I can hear the steam train rumble

Whistling at the crossing


Today at d’Verse, Grace asked us to consider mementos. We were to use a form created by Emily Romano, that is syllable based. The first line of eight syllables, the second line of six syllables, and the third of two syllables… is repeated four times.

When I went back to my hometown in Western Pennsylvania with my brothers a few years ago, we decided to look for remnants of coke ovens that used to turn coal into coke by burning off the gases in brick beehive ovens. They were last used in the 1950s. With the help of a friend who lives there, we were able to find some abandoned coke ovens. We hiked in through the brush to examine them. I brought back a piece of brick from one as a memento of my childhood.

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Photos; Dwight L. Roth

Photos: Ed West & Fayette County Historical Society


Willie Nelson playing Trigger (2)


Willie Nelson, an icon in the country music field, is growing old. The years of smoking pot are catching up with him. When he sings, he struggles to catch his breath for the next line.

He plays an old beat-up Martin guitar that he calls Trigger. It looks about as rugged as he does. A hole is worn through the body from his fingers scraping it as he picks out the melodies. Willie has a luthier who works on Trigger, gluing the cracks and keeping it playing. Willie says, “I’m going to keep on playing Trigger until one of us dies, and I think Trigger will outlast me.”

Now he is old and gray, and his guitar is much the same. He says, Everything I do is stitched with its color. Even the ashes falling from the end of my joint are gray!”


Watercolor Painting done today of Willie Nelson playing Trigger: Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse Lisa gave us a Prosery challenge to write a 144 word story that included the following line:

Everything I do is stitched with its color. – from poet W.S. Merwin’s poem, “Separation

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Looking Back on Poems From 2022

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Whatever happens to those lives lost in war? (5/2022)

Sunflower seeds drop (3/2022)

Up from the compost comes new life (1/2022)


Looking up I see (8/2022)

Dragonfly (6/2022)

Grumpy old groundhog (2/2022)

Little trumpeters (9/2022)


Boisterous March winds (3/2022)

Woodpeckers carve nest (4/2022)


My Pop was only a preacher (11/2022)

You can push pause, but you can never erase (12/2022)

Friends for fifty years (10/2022)


Photo of Red Bellied Woodpecker: Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’verse, Laura gave us a found poem assignment. She asked us to look back on our poems from 2022 and create a poem using the first line of the first poem for each month of the year!  It has to be as written without changing the line. This was an interesting challenge. I put the month in parentheses after each line! I have not added any words.

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Dreams Laid to Rest

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Do dreams and visions become clearer with age?

Or does the dimming of the eyes blur them into forgetfulness

Do the young have vision or just a dreams and wishful thinking

Dreams that fade away with life’s circumstances and harsh reality


Do dreams and visions become clearer with age?

Or does time and testing erase them from our view

knowing our dreams have turned into todaydreams

Realizing tomorrow is here and all we have left is today


Do dreams and visions become clearer with age?

Or does pain and suffering challenge our faith and question our God

as we are overshadowed by dreams that are crumbling around us…

Or do our crumbling dreams carry us on beyond the rational to the eternal


Visions turn into dreams as they ebb and then flow out with the even tide

Becoming memories of life’s journey, joys, and sorrows… dreams laid to rest.


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse Ingrid asked us to write a poem about dreams and visions. I decided to do a reflective piece with questions I find myself asking.

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Wild Woman in Pearls (2)

She was Kaleidoscope woman

Passing by my window

Brazen and bold in every way

Those doughnut flowers in her hair

White pearls around her neck

Emboldened her confident spirit

Colors of the rainbow

reflected from her boldacious personality

Ready to dance …Ready for Carnival


Painting “Woman in Pearls” – Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse, Dee Jackson asked us to write a Quadrille poem using some form of the word bold. She said we could even create our own bold word if we wished. I decided to go with boldacious. This is as bold as I can get at this point!

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Musings on a January Day

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Short January days seem good for reflection

Days continually get shorter for all of us

but never cycle long again as we grow older


I wonder if it is true that more old folks

pass away in January than any other month

Seems that way sometimes as we keep

getting messages, emails and phone calls

letting us know that friends we knew are gone


Looking in the mirror it makes me wonder

what the future holds for me

Will it be long and drawn out or short, quick,

and with sudden (un)expectation

I think I prefer the latter


No matter, I must do the best I can while I can

believing that life will be full of daily surprises

that fill my heart with love and happiness;

leaving a legacy of joy in its wake

that buoys me up and carries me along

with the ebb and flow of life’s shifting sands

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Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Posting for Open Link Night at d’Verse Poets Pub

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The Need for Speed

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In this American life we have developed

a Legacy of Speed which allows us

to zoom down the road like race cars

in the Indy 500


But woe to those who drive sleepy

or who choose to talk or text on their phone

A careless sway to the right soon jars them

back to attention as tires kiss the Rumble Strip(s)


And then there is my pet peeve

that “Ghost in the Burbs”

encountered on a quiet street

as I sail along a bit too fast

The obnoxious speedbump

lying in wait and then saying,

I was never there”


And then another… and another

…and another…

rattling my teeth and giving me

a concussion, reminding me that

a jolt of reality can save my life!


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse, Merril gave us a list of titles and asked us to choose two and incorporate them into a poem of our choosing. My words are in black italics.   Join us at: