Music in the Key of C

Music, when combined with poetry, leaves imprints on our hearts and souls. I remember the exact time I first heard Folk Music. Three high school kids had formed a group and were singing the Folk Songs of the 1960s. When I heard Blowin’ in the Wind for the first time, I was hooked. Peter, Paul and Mary along with Joan Baez reinforced what I had heard. It became forever embedded in my soul. I have been playing and singing these songs for over fifty years.

Words and melodies take us back or make us dream of something more. Songs lift our spirits, challenge a nation, and sometimes make us cry. What would life be like without a song to sing? Michael Jonathan, of the Wood Song Old Time Radio Hour says: “You can’t fight and sing at the same time!” You can on the other hand walk hand in hand and protest injustice while singing! Perhaps our nation needs some new songs to sing.

Music notes like words

Never ending melodies

Sing of summer’s end

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Painting of G Clef: Dwight L. Roth

Who Sings?

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“Who sings in the deepest water in the abandoned lagoon?”
When the cool morning mist rises over warm Autumn waters;
Is there really a song, if no one is there to hear the singing?
“Who sings in the deepest water in the abandon lagoon?”
Where humpback whales hide and play, hidden from people;
Calling with sonic voices in the depths of deep water.
“Who sings in the deepest waters of the abandon lagoon?”
Is it not a mother calling to her calf, to swim close alongside;
As she dips and dives, singing whale lullabies in morning sunshine?
“Who sings in the deepest waters of the abandon lagoon?”
Perhaps it’s the bones of whales whose songs from long ago;
Echo from the darkest depths, up into the dark waters
of the abandon lagoon!

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Photos: Dwight L. Roth

We just returned from spending a part of this past week on the Oregon Coast. It was cool but beautiful. We looked for whales and enjoyed the fragmented coastline, as the waves came rolling in crashing against the rocks. While I was gone, I did not get to participate in the d’Verse poets prompts.
On Tuesday, Laura asked for a poem written with rhetorical questions. She asked us to pick a line from one of six different Pablo Neruda poetic questions and write our poem based on that line.
Today, Frank Hubney continues the challenge, introducing us to the term  Polyptoton, a rhetorical device which uses words with a common base, but in different ways. I attempted to combine the two prompts in my poem. I have also repeated the quoted line at the beginning of each stanza!

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com

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

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

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