Morning Wake-up Call on the Farm

Uncle Fred's Farm Painting

Dwight      time to get up”

Five forty-five comes early

When cows must be milked

Just five more minutes…

Cowbells tinkle down the lane

Must get to the barn

Cows find their own stall

We hug their necks to chain them

Now it’s milking time

Milkers pump     milk flows

Pipeline to bulk storage tank

White gold for farmers

Twenty-six cows fed

and milked      time for our breakfast

Fried eggs      (fried) cornmeal mush

Same routine each day

Morning and evening chores done

Sleep comes easily


Painting: Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse, Frank Tassone asked us to write a poem using haiku in sequence.  I decided to do a snippet of farm life. When I turned thirteen, it started working summers on my Uncle Fred’s farm in central Pennsylvania.  He had a dairy farm with around 26 cows that had to be milked morning and evening every day,  three hundred and sixty five days a year!  Morning always came too soon for me. My Aunt Dorothy would call up the stair steps and tell me it was time to get up. This is my poem about getting up and getting to the barn each morning.  Some of my best memories come from working there.

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Noisy Sunday (Haiku)


The installation of a twelve inch Natural Gas line was an unwelcome wake up call this morning. Track hoes and dozers beeped their way to the wetland just beyond my back yard. Working together, like ants in an ant hill, what they do is amazing. They had one day to open the trench through  the small natural wetland that flows into the woods beyond. By five o’clock the pipes were in, welded together, backfilled and leveled.

Noise all day Sunday
Machines tear through ancient shale
Earth incisions deep
New artery laid
Welded joints // epoxy sealed
Soon pumps natural gas


Ground water seeps out
Relentless in its flowing
Pumps transfer puddles
Amid invasive
destruction; wetland is saved.
Natural flow continues


Trenches covered smooth
Beeping machines slink away
Woodland breathes silence


Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Black Crow Awakening

crow sillouite

Today I am attempting a Renga poem for Frank Tassone’s Haikai challenge. He asked us to write a Haikai poem of our choice that included crow’s first call. A Renga is usually more humorous in nature and often composed by two or more people each adding a verse. I hope I have done it justice!

Bad dreams awake me
Incessant cawing won’t stop
Outside my window

Black crow’s obnoxious racket
Creeps loudly through my pain(pane)

I lift the window
Yelling loudly at the crow
Crow ignores my fuss

I shout and bang on the pane
Breaking glass falls at my feet

My toe is bleeding
Frustration drowns out the pain
I reach for my gun

With shells in my hand I load
A bullet in the barrel

A loud gunshot fired
Black crow quickly flies away
My shot went awry

Hitting nothing but blue sky
Black crow flew back as I cried

On blood marked carpet
I tiptoed to the bathroom
Getting a band-aid

I wrapped up my toe tightly
Black crow perched laughing loudly


Print of crow: Bing/pintrest

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I discovered the Dove Nebula this evening. No it is not in outer space, it is on my sliding glass door. As the sun moves lower in the our hemisphere, it reveals things in different ways. A dove hit my door again the other day and left this oil mark on the glass. It was not nearly as pronounced as the one I had six months ago, until this evening. The sun was catching the splotch just right. I loved the way it reflected on the glass. I am amazed the way birds seeing a mirrored reflection of the woods will fly right into the window. Sometimes we do the same thing in life. This is my inspiration and reflection.


Mirror images reflect back

False illusions of safe passage

Wishing can sometimes distort reality

Twisting perception

Creating mirage visions

Seeing only desired images

Plunging full speed ahead

Toward wishful vistas

Floating free

No danger in sight



Crashing head on

Into the mirror of unreality

Stunned and shaken

I gather my senses

Take a second look

Shed false illusions

Distinguish true from false

Move forward with awareness

Comprehending mirage from reality

Knowing the difference


Photos: Dwight L. Roth