Making a Difference

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Her gray hair that once flowed around her shoulders
Now pulled back tightly held with a stretch band;
There she sat in her wheelchair // her gaunt body fading
Wrapped in her shawl // holding her little doll on her lap.
As I read stories to the group of elderly residents
She sat with her head down // eyes closed as though asleep;
Yet somehow, I knew she is still listening to me.
I finished, and got out my twelve-string ovation guitar;
They enjoyed singing my old classics from the sixties…
A time when we all were young, and words sung told stories.
As I began to sing, “You are my sunshine…” her head began to move
Others joined in letting the song take them to another place and time.
Thought her body remained motionless, her feet now began to move;
Her soft pink slippers began a rhythmic pattern as she relived the days
When she danced, carefree to the music, with the one she loved.
Clutching her dolly, her eyes went from open to closed and open again
She rode the rhythms of each song in her mind, as feet danced
Pushing her wheelchair back to her unit she quietly said to me,
“I really enjoy that.”
It was then I knew I was making a difference!

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Anmol, at d’Verse, asked us to write a poem that uses description of a person that paints a picture of that person for the reader. I decided to write about one of the elderly persons who comes to hear my stories and songs at the local nursing home.

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com

 

Anna

Dancing Girl

Four years old Anna’s, daddy played the fiddle in a small-time music group. On Saturday nights, her mother brought Anna to the Via Cappuccino to watch her daddy play.
As the group sang and played, Anna left her table and moved into the walkway where people pass to get their coffee. She threw her head of yellow curls back and danced and twirled as the music captivated her mind.
When Anna started school, her teachers reminded her that spontaneity was not welcome in the classroom. In Middle School, she became sad, bottled up, and aggressive. One day, she got sent home for a three-day suspension.
As her father drove her home that day, he told her,
“Anna, one day ‘you will love again the stranger who was your self’.”
*****
“Tonight, we play music!”
“Come listen to me play my fiddle (…and remember that stranger!”)

Bing Photo: coolwebsiteinfo.com

Tonight at d”Verse, Kim asked  us to write a flash fiction piece of not more than 144 words. We also were asked to include this line of a poem: ‘you will love again the stranger who was your self’

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com

Steps (a Quadrille)

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Guitar-fretted steps extended up beyond spacing
Climbing from the bottom sends my heart racing
These musical frets // are made for young ones chasing
Each other up and down // squealing // and with laughter piercing…
Like a violin being played sadly for the very first time

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

The word fret has several meanings. One means to fuss or complain. Another is to carve out in parallel lines, such as in architecture. Then there are the frets on a musical instrument like a guitar, which are brass strips placed at intervals and used for giving the strings varied pitches. Today at d’Verse Kim suggested we write a Quadrille, of only 44 words, using some form of fret! I have attempted to use it as an adjective describing a long set of steps at our local park. I saved this photo for the last two years trying to think of a way to use it in a poem. This was the perfect opportunity to do so.

Country Soul Music

Today at d’verse Amaya asked us to think about music that touches our soul and brings tears to our eyes! I have been a lover of country music since I was a teenager. Traditional Country Music has always been embedded in the lives of the listeners. Listening to it is often like watching a reality show. Vince Gill gained fame in the early 1990s, and his song Go Rest High on that Mountain touches my soul like no other. He finished it after the death of his brother a couple of years earlier.

The clip above is from the funeral of George Jones, where he sings his classic song with Patty Loveless.  George Jones, a veteran of Classic Country Music, was a close friend of Vince. As you listen, you can’t help but get caught up in the intense emotion flowing from this song. It is truly one of the great songs of our time.

Music searches the soul like nothing else;
Setting words on fire // lighting the spirit;
Inspiring our hearts // connecting us with God.
Tears flow as I listen to Go Rest High on the Montain;
Crying for my loss // Crying for their loss
Coming face to face with my mortality
Knowing at some time the center of focus will be me.
Empathy, pain, and grief all rolled into one;
Cathartic tears cleanse my soul // resets my spirit;
A time of reflection past … present … and future

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This is the official version of the song:

 

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Old Musicians

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Old musicians die
But their music lives on
Beautiful tributes
To the power they harnessed
That changed the world
Challenged politics
Social Norms
And, brought about revolutions
Music that touches the soul
Reaches all the way to heaven
And Hell
Yes, old musicians die
But their music is alive and well

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

In Limbo

See the source image

Our d’Verse prompt today is Limbo. I am trying the Lai poetic form again, and writing about the long awaited Royal Baby! Delivery any day. In the meantime, everyone waits in Limbo!

Royal baby soon
We might hear by noon
We’ll know
Megan screams pained tune
Harry brings balloons
Too slow
Might wait till June
Media buffoons
Limbo

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Photo: people.com

55words

Join us at:  https://dversepoets.com

The Lai poetic form has three couplets of five syllables; each followed by a two syllables line.

The five syllable lines must rhyme and the two syllable lines must rhyme as well.

The Feeling of Home

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When we moved to the Charlotte area of North Carolina several years ago, it felt like home. The rolling hills, the corn fields, and the woodlands all felt very much like the area of Pennsylvania where I grew up. I came to the conclusion that home is really a feeling that brings back memories of our  past. I wrote this poem as a song at that time describing how I felt. I have edited it to make it flow better when read.

Home is a Feeling
Home is a feeling you’ll know when you’re there
No matter how far you go no matter where you’ve been
That feeling slips in and lets you know…
Home is a feeling when you’re there
*
When you’re driving through the cornfields
 down a long and dusy road
And you see the evening sun
sinking slowly out of sight
That feeling slips in and lets you know…
Home is a feeling and you’re there
*
When you’re far away and all alone
wondering how long you’ll be gone
And a song comes on the radio
it takes you back and you’re right there
That feeling slips in and lets you know…
Home is a feeling and you’re there
*
Though mom and dad are gone
and the old house stands no more
The place is still just as real
you can feel their presence there.
That feeling slips in and lets you know…
Home is a feeling when you’re there
*
When you’re loved by those around you
and they all reach out to you.
Nothing else matters now…
You can see it in their smiles.
That feeling slips in and lets you know…
Home is a feeling when you’re there

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Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Callouses

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Finger tips // thick as leather
Built up from years of playing the guitar
Strings cutting into tender fingers
Pain subsides as the weeks go on
Callouses pad finger tips
Grooves leave impressions
Muscles in fingers increase pressure
Sensitivity lessens // notes get sharper
Six strings blend to build a chord
Fingers automatically dance on the neck
Thin strings cut sharp high notes
Course wound strings saw out bass sounds
Thumb wraps around the glassy smooth neck
Increasing the pressure of fingers on strings
Callouses combine with wood and metal
Creating good vibrations and beautiful music

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Photo: Dwight L. Roth  playing a hand made Showalter Guitar… solid walnut

Today we are to write about touch at d’Verse Poetry Pub. Touch is something we take for granted and don’t often think about. I chose to explore the feeling of playing a guitar. Strings of steel, lacquered bodies, and plastic picks all come together to make unique sounds.

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com

 

Feel the Music

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Does great music stir your passion. Music has the ability to appeal to every mood. Those who play music know how wonderful it is to feel the music pulsing though your soul, like the blood pulses through your veins. A feeling like none other. Medicine for the soul.

Passion for music

Fills every part of our being

Summer night’s magic

 

Sax Player - Stacey Strawn

Sax Player #3

Sax player #2

Photos taken by: Stacey Strawn

Band:

https://www.moonhooch.com/?fbclid=IwAR0irHEQ7IaYt7OtJj9BWgXtuxCZZAuAWaU4DUTU-BAf9gKKGE2hHTgWb8A

 

Old Songs

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Last week we got together with some old college friends, and their spouses, from the late 1960s. During those years we sang together in a group we called the Optimists. The Folk Music era was in full swing and the songs of Peter, Paul, and Mary as well as many other musicians influenced our song choices. We rented a house on Lake Wiley and spent four great days together singing and catching up on our lives. It was a wonderful time. The songs and harmonies came back together just like it was yesterday!

Old Songs

Notes cling to the chambers of my brain

Hanging there stretched across my mind

The first three notes…………

Drawing me like a moth to a flame

Snagging me with silky smooth harmonies

Wrapping me tightly in a cocoon of pleasure

Lost in dusty webs of the past fifty years

Sucked in and stored away for evermore

Eight-legged bands are now long gone

Leaving me stuck in the recesses of history

In an egg sac // hatching out tunes of my own

Running here and there stringing new webs

Never forgetting how great it was

To be caught up in the old song’s web

Notes branded on my brain for ever

Creating an identity of who I am today!

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Photo: Dwight L. Roth