In September of 2010, two of my brothers and I went back to our hometown of Masontown, Pennsylvania where we grew up. We spent four days driving around, visiting friends, and reliving memories of our childhood. It was a wonderful time. One of the things we wanted to do was find some old Coke Ovens that were buried in the hills nearby. When I was a child, they burned day and night lighting up the hillsides like jack-o-lanterns. The smoke poured into the air and was blown away by the wind. The gasses were burned off the coal then it was watered down and only the coke that remained. There was not EPA to worry over the environment back then. The coke was loaded into cars and hauled to Pittsburgh to fuel the steel mills.
With the help of a friend, we found some coke ovens down along the river at the little mining town patch of Mount Sterling. Most of the houses were gone and it was greatly overgrown with vegetation. We hiked through the weeds and underbrush and found the abandoned ovens crumbling but many still in tact. We made and shared great memories on that trip back in time.
Backbreaking work day after day at the coke ovens. – historical archives
Today at d’Verse, Laura reminded us that this is the 9th day fo the 9th month. She asked us to write write a nine line poem in iambic pentameter. This is my attempt. I am not sure if it is correct, but hopefully it is close.
Painting “Splitting Space and Time”: Dwight L. Roth
Today at d’Verse, Laura asked us to look at the use of repetition in our poetry. Epiphora, from the Greek means ‘to turn about/upon’… and is used to drive in a point through poetic repetition. I am using the word time in my poem to show how we flow and change in time itself.
The painting is an abstract that I did a number of years ago. I thought it fit well with my theme!
My sister sent me this little red tractor for my birthday. It is a “Quilling Card.” made by rolling and shaping small strips of paper to create a three dimensional design. It is a beautiful work of art, made with unimaginable precision. You can read more about Quilling in the summary below.
Today at d’Verse we are to write a Quadrille of exactly 44 words, using the word swift or a form of the word. I was immediately drawn to how fast time has passed in my lifetime. These are my reflections.
Believing in that unbelievable Spirit of all Creation
Experiencing grace and comfort in not knowing
In this winter of freezing joints and pushing buds
I defy the waiting cold earth with warm sunshine
I write my simple poems from inspired words unknown
As night closes in, each new day dawns
“I am the bud and the blossom, I am the late-falling leaf” – from The Paradox by Paul Dunbar
Photo: Dwight L. Roth
Today at d’Verse, Laura asked us to consider writing from the perspective of paradox. She gave us some lines from different poems to choose from for inspiration. I chose the one from Paul Dunbar’s, The Paradox.
Coming, going, the waterbirds don’t leave a trace ~ Dogen
Time pounds our lives like the ocean pounds the shore.
Do you not know how short and fragile life can be?
Some think wealth or power will produce a lasting legacy.
When all becomes bones and dust and empty coffins pilfered.
Strive to live the legacy you desire, not bound by time or life’s travail.
Such a life carries on generation to generation, spirit to spirit
Like grains of sand glistening on the beach, brought back again and again.
That lasting legacy is Love..
Photo: Dwight L. Roth
Today at d’Verse, Linda asked us to write a spiritual/mystical poem using a line from a list of several she gave us. She said we could also use the line as a Epigraph at the beginning of the poem. I chose the line written by Dogen for my Epigraph.
Watching change taking place in my lifetime makes me conclude that it doesn’t happen quickly. Seems like paradigm shifts are happening all around, demanding immediate changes in society. History shows us it may take awhile.