The Big Choices in Life

Choices made change our life forever. In 1936, my father was a young school teacher in a farming valley of Central Pennsylvania. He had just married my mom, his sweetheart, who lived on the farm across the road from his home. It was at that time that he was asked to consider leaving his teaching job and becoming the pastor of a country church in a small coal town of Southwestern Pennsylvania four hours away. It was a big decision for them to make, especially since my mom was pregnant at the time with my older brother.

After praying for direction and talking to their families they decided to accept what they felt was God’s call for their life. His family was supportive of the move, but her father was not happy that he was taking his oldest daughter to the coal fields of western Pennsylvania. In spite of this they decided to make the move in the spring of 1937. The move changed all of our lives forever. Together they raised five children, and he was pastor of the church there for thirty-one years. They were an example that shaped our lives and perspectives for which I am grateful.

On this Father’s Day, I think back over what I learned from both my father and my mother. It is not so much what they said, but who they were, their love for each other, and for others that left the lasting impressions on all of us children.

A paradigm shift

Teacher to pastor servant

Changed lives forever

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Father’s Day 2021


Grandma Roth and Christopher 001 (2)

Memorial Day brings back memories of all those loved ones who have passed on.  Hopefully memories are good ones that can be recalled with warm feelings. My mother loved our boys and enjoyed being a part of their life. My father died at age 70, but she live on to be 93. She enjoyed watching them grow and seeing them become parents to her great grandchildren. We look back with fond memories of those days.

Memorial Day brings

memories of lost loved ones.

Always in our hearts


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

The Feeling of Home


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


Photo: Dwight L. Roth



Being adopted must be a traumatic experience for a little boy who started the first year of his life with a foster parent. This was the experience of my grandson. He was adopted into a family who spoke a different language, ate different food, and had other children. You can understand why he did not want his new parents to leave him at night. I wrote this as a lullaby that expresses some of the feelings that I imagined occurred during this time. He has since grown into a well adjusted little boy.

Sweet Baby Boy
Sweet baby boy just close your eyes
Go off to dreamland with a sigh
Sweet baby boy fly away
To worlds unknown beyond the eye
Sweet baby boy come to me now
With all your tears a crying
Sweet baby boy I’ll ease your fears
And soon you’ll be a sighin’
And when you wake I’ll be right here
Near you I’ll be lyin’
To keep you safe and let you know
This is your home where I am
Through tears and fears throughout the years
I’ll always be your Mother
And though you might not understand
There’ll never be another


Painting by Dwight L. Roth

Jilly at d’Verse asked us to use repetition in our poetry today to bring emphasis to the poem. Sweet Baby Boy came to mind when I read this prompt. It is a song I wrote as a lullaby for my adopted grandson when he was adopted several years ago.

Join us at:



What does it mean to be patriotic?

Is it only being a soldier fighting in war

Or standing for the national anthem

Is it voting for the “Right” political party

And talking junk about the one that’s “Left”

Is it always agreeing with government policy

Or putting your hand on your heart for the pledge…

Making sure we leave out “In God we trust!”

Perhaps it is voting that makes us patriotic

Picking from a list of unknowns or voting a straight ticket


Patriotic people include many who make life happen

Doctors and nurses care for the sick and injured

Orderlies clean up the messes and mop the floor

Factory workers daily keep America humming

Truckers haul it to your destination

Farmers raise the crops that feed us all

Teachers lay the foundation of future success

Construction workers build our buildings

Pastors and Priests care for our souls

Soup kitchen workers and volunteers feed the homeless

Business people Secretaries // Mail carriers and police

Mothers of children shaping young lives

Cooking, Cleaning // Loving and Caring

And the list goes on and on…


Perhaps it is those who show respect to one and all

Workers for peace both at home and abroad

Those who bring people together  building relationships

Patriots stand for justice and care for the needy

All who contribute to the common good

Make our country strong


Are patriots in their own right


Photo: Dwight L. Roth




Alzheimer’s is the thief that keeps on stealing, slowly robbing you of all things present and finally all things past. We just returned from a visit with my wife’s father, who has been confined in an Alzheimer’s unit 2500 miles away from us. Our visits are great while we are there. He keeps remembering less and less as he now turns 91. This poem shares some of my thoughts as I reflect on our time together.


Though your mind has grown dim

Your personality is much the same

A surprised smile when we arrive

Your desire for family information…

That will not stay long in your memory


Your warm smile and appreciation

Always there when we visit

Always there when the staff helps you

Always there when we say goodbye


While we are there your joy

Is new every morning

Pockets of the past are still filled

With memory coins slowly slipping out

Through that black hole in your brain


Our visits are joyful // you still get my jokes

You laughter is genuine and full

Though you still ask our names from time to time

You are present in the moment // a gift every time


In spite of all you have been through

You have adapted and applied Paul’s words,

“In whatever state I am in //

…there I will be content.”

You won’t remember any of this

When we’re gone

But you sure enjoyed our visit

While we were with you


Photo: Dwight L. Roth


His granddaughter Jen is walking for Justice to help  young girls caught in Sex trafficking. See her story on her blog at:






Gun Limericks




We are so contradictory in our affair with guns. On one hand we revere our American Heroes and buy our kids GI Joe toys and guns to play with, while telling them that guns are not to be pointed at anyone because they are so dangerous. We buy them video games of virtual reality that allows them to kill at will, and then tell them this is not real and they should never think of killing real people. We buy guns at gun shows and keep them in our house, and tell our children if anyone tries to break in we will shoot to kill. We watch our Hollywood heroes kill at will, but they are not to do the same. What are you teaching your children by word and by the toys and games you allow them to own?  Solutions solved by guns almost always end in death and collateral damage.

Teachers at school are all shaken
Students lay dead// lives taken
Blame freely passed
The public’s aghast
While guns freely trade and are taken


Student in school have had enough
Parents and administrators in a huff
While congress delays
The gun lobby pays
As the NRA’s stand remains tough


TV news constant streaming
Showing pictures of shooter and screaming
The death count will rise
Amid shots fired and cries
As the next insane planner keeps on scheming


Trump says teachers should be armed
As parents and teachers sound their alarm
Teachers used to be teaching
Carrying guns seems far reaching
As they try to keep children from harm


Gun Ad above can be seen at




No change is brought though prayers besought

Unanswered question of century…s past

What happened to the miracles we were taught

    when our call remains unanswered? 

When God sheds tears from heaven no joy is brought…

When we walk through the valley of the shadow

of death… we fear every evil

     of which there are many

     lurking in the shadows

     like fanged creatures waiting to strike

Parents without their children cry with the widows

Raging and venting their anger

      against God and man


“Why was it my child who had to die today?”

Love and grace hide behind the storm clouds… 

Pouring buckets of salty tears over the whole land.

Forty days and forty nights will nare suffice…

No ark prepared for this kind of calamity

     will lift man or beast to the mountain top.

Grief runs deep as God remains in the shadows…

As always, waiting for the clouds of grief to separate

     letting the light and hope shine through once more.


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Family Roots


Finding ones roots has become a popular thing to do. DNA testing will tell you where your ancestors originated from. As we grow older we realize the importance of our family roots. This is especially true when we lose a parent. When this happens we see how significant they were in helping us become who we are today. Trees are held up and tower seventy feet or more into the air. When a storm blows a tree over we can see just how important it is to have a strong root system.



Beneath every tree are roots

Holding interlocking feeding

Bringing strength foundation

The source of all beauty we see

Looking at a tree

You’ve heard

“Behind every successful man

is a good woman.”

My mother was that good woman

Holding interlocking our family

Feeding caring for each one

My father a pillar of the community

Only on strength and nourishment

Of my mom who was always there for him

An unsung hero she was the roots of our tree

Without her none of us would be

Standing as we are today


My mother lived to be 93 years old!

Photos: Dwight L. Roth