Walls Closing In

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Walls built with stones and mortar of memories
Locking tightly together each painful reality
Stacking and cementing them tightly in place
Till the soul is hidden without even a trace
Dungeon of doom condemning the soul
Cold place of solitude where no one can dwell
A roof on top to keep out the light
Beautiful on the outside but dark in the heart
Protected and guarded from any more pain
Windows boarded up to keep out the rain
Though years have gone by the walls still close in
Creating a chasm the soul cannot swim
A castle on the hill of life with walls strong and tall
No windows no drawbridge no one comes to call
A lifetime of memories too painful to tell
A soul locked in memories
A real living hell

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Tea and Pain

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Twisted joints aflame

Hot tea makes one forget pain

Flowers bloom outside


Ruth said this is the way it really is….

Twisted joints inflamed
Holding heat eases the pain
Flowers bloom in my heart

Photo: Dwight L. Roth


Feeling Rejected

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On Good Friday Christians reflect on the death of Christ on the cross, and what his sacrifice means for us. The human side of Jesus suffered unspeakable physical pain. Some say that God will give you strength in your time of need. But it is my experience that when that time comes, it is very difficult to feel that presence. Even Jesus cried out on the cross, wondering why God had forsaken him in his darkest hour. Pain and rejection seem to be Siamese Twins! It is very hard to have your whole world collapse and not feel rejected. This is why it is so important to have persons who will walk with you and help you regain your perspective once more, understanding that God loves you even when you don’t feel it.

Dark night of the soul
Feelings rejection’s pain
Forsaken // alone
Stretched out on life’s cruel cross
Has God turned his face from us?
In His pain he cried
“My God, my God, why have
you forsaken me!?”
Feeling rejection’s pain
In that dark night of the soul


Painting: Dwight L. Roth

Sticks and Stones

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Sticks and Stones will break my bones
But names will never hurt me
Sticks and Stones will break my bones
And words will hurt me even more
Bones heal
Remembered from time to time
Words leave scars on the soul
Indelible marks
Never erased
Perhaps forgiven

Be careful what you say…

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

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Loras bracelet

“Metamorphosis doesn’t look the same for everyone. Don’t be afraid to share your story.”

We live in a time where Mental Health issues and PTSD  affect many in our society. Some things in life cannot be fixed by a pill, a doctor, or a will to change. In the past generation, sharing this kind of issue was a stigma and considered shameful by many. Our scars and differences are not something to be hidden or kept within ourselves. Sharing our story can be the first step in finding healing and wholeness again.  Our story is what makes us unique from everyone else. How good are you at listening to what others are going through?

“Shame happens

when we largely treat suffering

like a problem to fix

rather than a story to tell.”

Photo from: Lora Myers Roth

Used by permission

Quote came from an article in Christianity Today:




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Lightning pain surge
Recalculating reality in split seconds
Turning //flying off to a nearby limb
Stunned // dazed // confused
The path of deception was clear
Only a dead stop brings a wakeup call
Leaving imprints // taking bruises
Concussion collision survived
Learning through “hard knocks”
The dove phoenix rises once more


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Nicks and Scratches

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The First Scratch is the deepest
Renting not only paint but my heart
New paint joy pierced with pain
Nicks and scratches on the fenders
Recently repaired // repainted
Ten years old but shiny as new
Scratch just a nick
Seems like the Grand Canyon

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Today at d’Verse, De Jackson asked us to write a Quadrille of 44 words using the word nick. It brought back memories of  getting my ten-year-old truck painted a couple of years ago. It was not long till a careless driver in a parking lot put the first nick, and then scratch, on the new paint. The first scratch is always the worst.  It has had a few more since then! My apologies to Sheryl Crow for the recreating the first line from her song.

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com

Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Nightmare in the Dentist’s Chair

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Turn seventy-two // what can I do
With a fortune in crowns and fillings
Looks like my investments have fallen
Gone into a recession I’m feeling.
Two of them must come out of there;
The last of my wisdom and my silver too
All hit a new low this week
As I sat in the oral surgeon’s chair.
The oral surgeon welcomed me in;
Gave me his best reclining chair
Told me to climb in.
He sat down beside me // put his hand on my arm
Told me the details // said no need for alarm;
“I will numb you up and it will hurt a little
Until the Novocain kicks in;
Then it will be mostly pressure
As I twist and pull //spin and piddle”
He said he could give me gas if I wanted
But I opted only for the shots
Not knowing what was coming
I figured that would hit the spot.
It didn’t take long to soon became aware;
As the needle hit the lower jaw…
The usual pinch and sting were there;
But when he shot the upper jaw
My brain did a double take // sent up a flare.
Heat spread all the way up my nose
Clear to the back of my head;
I said “Woah, what was that!”
As he stuck a couple more in my head
He patted my arm said, “You did well!”
“It will be numb in no time;”
That I could tell.
In a few minutes he was back
With cap and gown and mask
Stuck a block in my jaw
And started on his task
He twisted and pulled // even sliced and cut
But the tooth would not come out
It was then he paused // and got his Dremel Saw out!
Sitting there helpless what could I do?
As he proceeded to cut my tooth in two!
It seemed OK till he got to the nerve;
It was then the second jolt kicked in;
“Oh, what was that,” but he kept on cutting.
Then grabbed that tooth one more time
And jerked each half out //leaving me sputtering.
With needle and thread, he sewed me up
Then started on the one on top
I thought, oh no, but it was too late
…And did it all over again

Dentist Clip Art:   clipartpanda.com

Growing Older

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I thought since I turned another year older last week, perhaps it was a good time to remember what growing older entails. There are so many scenarios for growing old that it is too bad we can’t pick and choose our fate. But I guess we are stuck with the roll of the dice. The following are some of the ways old age is catching up with me.

Pulling Pranks
Jokester Old Age moved in
Bringing Rock and Roll bands
Playing shrill heavy metal
Unending concerts in my ears

Or // maybe it’s seventeen-year locust
Emerging just below my gray loam
Springing forth in continual halleluiahs
Attaching themselves to brain stem and canals

In addition // miners of decay
Carve caverns in my bituminous teeth
Great profit for dental barons
Depleting my piggy bank

Old Age seems to have made himself
Right at home pulling painful pranks
Not minding the misery, he is causing
Laughing as I drain my account


photo: Dwight L. Roth