Hair Daze

Oh, the glorious memories of past days

Combing long flowing hair with swept back duck-tails

Smooth waves that would make a surfer gaze

Sadly the glory days leave only tales

But, I do remember the TV ad…

Brylcreem… A little dab’ll do ya!”

Photo: Me in about the seventh grade!

Today at d’Verse, De Jackson is taking me into my past, asking us to write a Quadrille poem (exactly 44 words) with the word dab in it. When I as an adolescent, I had lots of hair. Brylcreem was my hair cream. It is amazing what you could do with it when combing it back into the Elvis Presley style duck-tail wave. Funny how the jingles never seem to leave your brain. 😎

Join us at: …and click on the Mr. Linkey box to read more.

Head Banging

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.

Ocean’s white head slams

Against solid rocks of time

Change happens slowly

White foam creates a big splash

Hard heads take time to erode

Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Summer Memories

Chris and Jason at Duck, NC 1977 001 (3)

Our first trip to Nags Head
North Carolina’s outer banks…
Camped in the dunes at Duck.
Two excited little boys
climbed the dunes
chased receding waves
created castles in the sand
collected sea shells
and sun rays in July’s heat.
Faces flushed // slept soundly.

Jason Playing in the Surf - 1977 001 (2)

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse, Mish asked us to used the word flush as our prompt. I decided to leave the tempting current toilet paper shortage behind, and write about a beautiful memory from forty years back. This is Quadrille Monday so our poems must be exactly forty-four words.

Join us at:

Standing Alone

the Boddie Lighthouse at Nags Head NC 001 (2)

Night Light
Towering above dunes gnawed by ocean waves
Stands a monument of engineering
Seeking some souls to save
A beacon of light to prowling ships in the night
Specters of the sea
Those who listen… who shake with fright
Will live to see dry land tonight
Light piercing darkness guides a ship all alone
Flashing danger ore a graveyard
Of lost ship’s bones
A brick and mortar giant of clay
Calls excited children to come and play
Or climb the winding backbone of steel
And dream of one day steering a ship’s wheel
And every night the mirror shines
Reflecting the light within
Through hurricanes, lightning, wind, and rain
Into the black of night again
Children and parents have all gone home
The dark waves pound the shore
Standing strong it’s all alone
Knowing some ships sail no more
Rain and hail beat the window panes
But the light of life never wains
Ships toss on the rolling foam
The colossal stands alone

the Boddie Lighthouse at Nags Head NC 001 (2)

Photo of the Boddie Lighthouse near Nags Head, NC

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Reposted on d’verse for open link night.  Come join us at d’verse~Poets Pub.



Beach painting

The ocean is one of the least expensive forms of therapy. I found this painting I did a while back. It shows the calming effect that the ocean brings to our life. Hopefully, it will take you to a calming place and time in your life as well.


The pregnant ocean swells and flattens

Teaming with life unseen.

Feel its heartbeat

In the twilight rhythm of the waves

Gently rolling in… caressing the shore.

Salt breezes soften the heat of the day

Gulls circle searching for one more bite

Twilight brings a calm serenity,

As the sun kisses the ocean on last time

Palms silhouetted black against the red sky

Sway strong and tall in the evening breeze.

Everyone has gone into the shadows

Following the flaming line of Tikki Torches

Called by the beat of the drums.

Dancers undulate, grass skirts sway

Twilight’s deep shadows

Close into darkness… broken only by flames.


Painting: Dwight L. Roth


Fourth of July at Nags Head

Chris and Jason at Duck, NC 1977 001

We will be celebrating the Fourth of July in a couple of days. Hot summer weather seems to call us to the beach. Sun and surf on ninety degree days seem to be the perfect combination.  When our boys were little we made many summer trips to  Nags Head and Emerald Isle, North Carolina camping and enjoying the waves. Riding the swells on our blow-up mattresses was always a favorite thing to do. I always carried a shovel which we used to build sand creations. Now thy are grown and have children of their own who they take to the beach and do all the fun things all over again.

Good Times at Nag’s Head

Sand and surf God’s natural sandbox

A place where awe and imagination merge

Watching our two boys chase ebb and flow

Squealing with delight as the surf laps their ankles


Amazing creatures evolve out of the sandy beach

With each shovel full of sand they take shape

Octopus, Sea Turtle, Shark and Whale

All come to life at the hand of their creator

Sand Castles with moats and towered walls   

Sit on the edge of destruction

Hot Rod with seat and steering wheel

Roars to life in that three year old mind

Riding the swells on a bubble of air

Feeling the power of the ocean breathing beneath

Waiting for just the right wave

Driving into the shallows


Those were good times, no, great times at Nag’s head

Some forty years ago  

Now it’s grandchildren and a new creator

Bringing awe and imagination to life

And that three-year old

Still loves God’s ocean playground


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Reposted from my book Ebb and Flow

Toes in the Ocean

Students seeing the ocean for the first time 1978 001

In 1977 I moved to North Carolina and got a job teaching fifth grade in a very rural school system. Our classes were based on achievement test scores, and I had the fifth class of the fifth grade!  Needless to say my introduction to NC culture was in overdrive that years. In March we took all the fifth graders to the Outer Banks. We visited the Wright Brothers Memorial, climbed the sand dunes at Kill Devil Hills and stopped for a short time at the public beach. Many of my students had never seen the ocean even though they lived only four hours away. Their hesitation and excitement was a joy to see.

Toes in the Ocean

What must it feel like to see the waves

Watching them ebb and flow for the very first time

The thrill of white foam licking your toes

Disappearing just as fast as it came

Eleven years old and nary a visit

Never seeing this wild wide wonder

But today is the day to stop look with awe

Put your toes in the sand sink into the surf

How wonderful to squeal with delight

Friend in hand you take those first icy cold steps

Together experiencing a lasting impression

Forever indelible in your minds

One of the memorable joys of teaching

Is to see your students experience the ocean

For the very first time in their life


Photo:  Dwight L. Roth

The Beach has Soul


The Beach has Soul

Went to the beach today only a week into spring

Sunshine a cool breeze and no phone to ring

Drove three hours for a day of fun


I asked myself why we go through all this

But for her it‘s worth it a moment of bliss

Sand dunes with beach chairs lugged across



Better than summer I love this time of year

The waves are gentle the sky is clear

Low temps warm sun less people to deal with



Families know it’s all about kids

Shovels sandcastles and coolers with lids

Running and squealing with each cold wave



It is now seven-thirty see the sun’s orange hue

Can’t believe those kids are not turning blue

Three little ones still playing in the icy cold waves



The ocean’s beauty draws all to its shores

The beach has soul we keep coming back for more

Sunburns and jellyfish riptides and grit

Memories of fun we will never forget


Photos of Myrtle Beach, SC:  Dwight L. Roth