Time Out from Reading

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George hadn’t seen much of his young friend. Jim love reading books up in his tree house where he would read for hours.

As he sat on his porch, Old Blue lying at his feet, George longed for the times when Jim would come sit on his swing and hear about the night George got trapped on the mountain in a blizzard.

A young boy should be out riding his bike and swimming in the pond thought George. Then an idea came to mind that would benefit them both. George walked down to the tree and hollered up at Jim.

“Jim, tomorrow I am taking you on a hike I think you will like.”

“And bring no book, for this one day we’ll give to idleness.”

You and I are going to hike up to that cave where I shot at the mountain lion!

Treehouse Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse, Ingrid is having us write prosery, which is a prose piece of 144 words and including a line from a poem that she has pick for us.

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She taken them from Wordsworth’s ‘Lines Written at a small distance from my House…‘ which is included in the collection Lyrical Ballads, a groundbreaking poetic collaboration between Wordsworth and Samuel Taylor Coleridge, published in several editions between 1798 and 1802. The ‘Lines’ of this poem are addressed to his sister, Dorothy, and the particular lines I have picked out for you are these:

“And bring no book, for this one day
We’ll give to idleness.”

My story is a spin-off of a story I wrote called the Climb about an old man hunting in the mountains and getting caught in a blizzard. Following is the first segment of the Climb.

https://wordpress.com/post/rothpoetry.wordpress.com/27090   plus eight more segments

Cellow Yat (a nonsense poem)

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The Neighbor’s Cellow Yat slinks into my yard

and hunkers down underneath my Fird Beeder.

With the patience of a stone statue, she waits…

for the Firds to land on the Beeder

A Wittle Lren comes looking for Beeds

sitting right above the Cellow Yat.

But she thinks to herself, “A Wittle Lren?”

What kind of meal is that!?”

So patiently she waits as Srown Barrows fly out and back;

Hoping for a bigger mouthful than a Barrow or a Lren

or the tiny Nittle Luthatch, not even enough for a snack…

All foraging at the Fird Beeder above Cellow Yat.

Aha, a big Cat Fardinal has arrived on the Beeder landing

gobbling down sunflowers, dropping shells on Cellow Yat’s head

But just when she thought this a meal worth taking…

her leap left her only a Fouth Mull of Meathers!

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Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Bjorn, at d’Verse, asked us to write a nonsense poem. My first inclination was that is silly. The second was, I can’t do that. But I kept mulling it over and decided my Left Brain was trying to tell my Right Brain, “This was not a logical thing to do.” So, after thinking about it overnight, I sat down and started writing. I remembered Shel Silverstein’s poem about the Runny Babbit and decided to try this format. This is the story of our neighbor’s big Yellow Cat! Hope you enjoy it!

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Life’s Potholes


Today I patched potholes in the street

Filling cracks // stretchmarks growing wider

Black sticky tar // thick as nutty pudding

Seals the holes and slows deterioration


Our life is like road paved and sweet

We live like it will last forever

But pavement cracks and potholes widen

from our activities and endless recreation


Some seek to just pave over // making everything neat

Without fixing personal issues they hide her

When troubles come from their past that’s hidden

Life’s pavement crumbles from disillusion


So, keep life’s road protected from the heat

And from foul and nasty weather

Avoid division // help relationships widen

Address life’s potholes // sealed with occlusion


Sanaa at d’Verse, challenged us to write from French poetic history.

“Today we will delve deep into the French poetic form “Rima Dissolutas.” Popular with 12th and 13th century French poets, rimas dissolutas is a poem that rhymes and doesn’t rhyme.

For instance, each stanza contains no end rhymes, but each line in each stanza rhymes with the corresponding line in the next stanza–sometimes employing an envoi at the end.”

I had to wait a day to get this one to work for me. Today my friend Peter helped me patch some potholes in our neighborhood. A few neighbors donated to the cause, and we purchased and used 7 bags of asphalt mix in the holes and cracks. This gave me the inspiration for today’s poem. I hope I have the form correct.

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Photos: Dwight L. Roth

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.

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Liberty’s Passion

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The sight of Lady Liberty standing in New York Harbor

stirs passion in the hearts of those seeking freedom

A new life, new opportunities, escape from oppression

A welcoming symbol

Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses

yearning to breathe free…”


The cross a symbol of freedom to Christians for 2000 years

Stirs passion in the hearts of believers seeking freedom

A new life of Faith, Hope, and Love

Turning their backs on their dark past, now walking in Light

God’s Grace welcomes all…

Come unto me all who are weary and heavy laden,

and I will give you rest…”

Stamp Art: Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse, Merril asked us to choose a historic symbol that is stamped with passion and write a poem of our choosing about it. I did this piece of stamp art a few years ago. When I did it I thought of the meaning of Freedom. One is a passion for physical freedom from oppression and religious freedom, the second, the freedom from the oppression within our souls. To me the similarities are amazing.

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Quotes from: Emma Lazarus poem on the Statue of Liberty and from the New Testament (Bible).

Things Unspoken

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Why don’t you ever talk about your childhood,” Jim asked, as he sat on the edge of the porch.
George paused for what seemed like a long moment. “It is because that is part of my life I try to forget. My mother was Shawnee Indian from a tribe in Shawnee Oklahoma, where I was born.”
In those days, the government took us Indian children and put them in a school to learn to speak English and become part of white culture. If we spoke our Shawnee language, they would punish us.”
I dress in their stories patterned and purple as night.”
How awful,” said Jim, “It must have been very sad to be separated from your parents.”
My mother passed away during that time. I didn’t even get to go to her funeral.”
So, that is why I try to forget my childhood.”

Painting: Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse, Lisa reminded us of the atrocities carried out against Native American Children in the US and Canada.  Children were taken from parents and put in training schools to get rid of their Indian Culture. Sadly, many of those who ran the schools were from various religious groups. There were many abuses that took place with these children. Now they have found mass graves in the US and in Canada where some of these Native American Children were buried. Seems like we will never learn!

Lisa gave us a line from a poem written by Kimberly Blaeser, called “When We Sing of Might,” which must be used in the story as it is written. The line is…   I dress in their stories patterned and purple as night.”

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Dancing Queen

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Shimmy and shakin’
Having the time of your life
Dancing on my rail
claws digging deep
owning it
Knowing every bird watching
Will shake with fright
Hoping you will dance till night
And not take flight


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse, Lillian payed tribute the music group ABBA. They had only one number one hit in their career. It was the song, Dancing Queen. She asked us to take only one line from the song and us it in a poem of our choosing.  I chose the line, “Having the time of your life…”

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Frozen Reflections (haiku)

grasses-at-ennerdale-water- Fay Collins

Frost nips tall grasses

Reflections freeze on the Lake

Reality twists

Today at d’Verse Sarah asked us to revisit Faye Collins’ wonderful art. I chose Grasses at Ennerdale Water! I love the tall grasses and leaves along the pond. I don’t know exactly what season this is set in, so I chose to make it a frosty interpretation! It looks like it could be late Fall from the reflections.

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Friends Who Enrich Our Lives

Bunky and Celia's Shack

Friends Who Enrich Our Lives

As I look back on my life, I recall individuals who have enriched my life just by who they were and how they treated me and others. There are so many I could name in every stage of my life. My friend Bunky was one of those people.

Bunky ran a siding business and in 2005 I started working for him as the warehouse manager. I knew nothing about siding, but I did understand the building trade and was somewhat proficient on the computer. I came in and had a couple of hours orientation and started work the next day. He was very patient with me and helped me learn the details of the business. I worked there for six years.

Bunky was not just a boss, he was a friend. I sat in his office many times listening to his life experiences. He had so many great stories to tell. We became great friends during that time. Sadly, he died in 2017 in a fall at his mountain cabin. He will always be in that memory bank of friends.

Our friendship ran deep

Sharing life’s experiences

He died way too soon

Today at d’Verse, Frank asked us to choose something or someone we are thankful for in our life. I chose to write about my good friend Bunky Reges who was full of life and laughter. He came from “the old school” as they say. He was strongly opinionated but very likable to those who knew him well.

My Haiku at the end is a Senryu. I hope this will still pass for a Haibun.

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Photo: Dinner with Bunky and Celia at the mountain Shack! – 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.

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