Death and Life

Great White Egret (2)

I posted this poem follow the death of my wife’s Uncle David, two years ago in September. We traveled to Pennsylvania and enjoyed our interactions with family members we had not scene in a long time. Following the funeral, we traveled around the community where here father’s family lived. This included visiting the Snavely Mill, that was once owned by her great grandfather. At the mill we encountered a beautiful Great White Egret that lived near the millpond! I thought it would be good to repost this memory once again for you to enjoy.

Mourning the loss of an uncle today
Everyone gathered to say goodbye
A sad occasion yet a celebration of life
Reviewing a life well lived and too soon gone
A reunion of sorts where the family gathers
Not only to say goodbye but to say hello
Many years of disconnect come together
Childhood cousins now grown break bread
Speak of their Uncle with stories to tell of their own
Following the funeral a long ride in the country
Enjoying corn fields and bubbling creeks
Looking for pieces of history finding some
At Great Grandpa’s millpond next to the Snavely Mill
A beautiful gift rises into the air
A Great White Egret with spreading wings
A reminder that along with history and reconnections
Life goes on
Life is beautiful
Life is still worth living

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Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Red Brick Schoolhouse

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When I was growing up, this little red schoolhouse sat just across the field from our home. When my oldest brother was five, he remembers wandering across the field to play with the school children at recess. Very soon after that, it was converted into a house. Our friend’s, the Kosacks, lived there with their daughter and a little black bulldog named Bowser for many years! It is amazing that 80 years later it is still standing; and people are still living in it. I took this photo in September, when I went back to visit my old home place, which did not fair so well.

Little red schoolhouse

Winter // children walked to school

Now a family home

 

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Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Appreciation

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#1    4′ x 4′

Appreciation is one of the most pleasant surprised one can encounter. To have your work loved and appreciated is validation like no other.  A couple of years ago, I was asked by a friend to paint his childhood home, which has long been torn down. He had one photo of the house and wanted the painting for his aging father, who was in early dementia. He hung the painting on his wall and brought his father in to view it. He told me his father just stood and looked and looked at it, making comments about the house and its past.

This past year, as I was driving home from town, I got a cell phone call from his aunt, who wondered if I could paint one for her as well. She said her husband saw the original one and really loved it. When it was finished, they loved it and even gave me a tip! She called me up a week later saying how much they appreciated the painting.  What a pleasant surprise to fell this kind of appreciation.

Our old house is gone

Many great mem’ries remain

Painting preserves joy

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#2   4′ x 4′

Paintings: Dwight L. Roth

This was written for: https://dversepoets.com/

Frank Hubney asked us to write a Haibun with the prompt — Pleasantly Surprised.

A Haiban is a poem composed of a short prose followed by a Haiku. The two when combined make the Haiban.