Thoughts Poetry



Now if I tell you I am sitting here, listening to the Goldfish sing,
You would probably look at me with a half-cocked eye saying it’s a crazy thing,
But I’m serious, you see and I’ll tell you just why this isn’t a foolish fling.

Look at the World, wars and hunger everywhere and from the media there is no escape.
Look at our Nation, companies closing, downsizing in the name of progress, how fake.
Look at our cities, after years of effort and billions spent, the blight and homeless wait.

While some may say it’s futile, all is lost, there are a few that never give up trying.
I left the rat race and someone took my place in pursuit of success they’re still vying.
But for me, I’ll just rest. I gave it my best and now it’s my time to hear the Goldfish sing.

We’re Americans. It’s our destiny and our curse to make things better, not worse
Here and around the World, we won’t duck the challenge of making Freedom ring.
Progress is a journey, not a destination, from which new players get on and off
I enjoyed my trip and the gains we made, now it’s my time to hear the Goldfish sing.



Suppose for a moment that all friends are flowers,
What kind of bouquet do you see?
Are you surrounded today by all kinds of colors?
Or is your view merely dull shades of gray.

Some people feel they can do it alone,
For reasons we’ll never know.
For them no flowers will ever be seen
Loners simply won’t let them grow.

There’s another big group whose environment was faulty
Opportunity never came their way
Their flowers were few, maybe one or two,
Hardly enough to brighten one’s day.

But for me, I was lucky, almost from the start
I gathered many friends, held them fast in my heart
Now I stand in the meadow, such colors abound me
Near and far, overwhelmed by beauty all around me.



It’s Sunday morning and the brilliant sun is shining through the tall opaque windows
As I sit quietly in my usual pew and my Church is nearly empty.
I too, am early. It’s ladies Sunday and my loving wife is an usher.
She stands by the door to greet the people as her role comes to play.

The six beautiful chandeliers competing with the sunlight
Are a distant second to the power and beauty of God’s Hand.
The quiet of the moment is powerful, but much too short as
The music people, singers, bell ringers and others are drifting in.

The leather-brown, well-varnished pews are gradually filling,
While the rumble of friendly chatter begins to grow,
The ushers’ work is ending and the bell ringer’s ensemble
Begins ringing “Jesus loves me yes I know.”

Then a blanket of reverent silence falls across the faithful,
As an opening Prayer ascends,
Followed by songs, usually three, to wake up the souls
Of some and to the others give way to mends.

Special recognition was given to our faithful organist,
For thirty years served with unfailing dedication.
Several gifts marked this milestone followed
By extended applause with a grateful, standing ovation.

The sunlight through the window changed as time
Moved the sun along its ceaseless way.
The music, Prayers and sermon wove together
The desired and welcome message for the day.

The final hymn did its job well
As the departing faces would reveal.
And help each of us be energized,
Until we again hear the Church bell peal.



It was February ’84 when at the fork in the road we followed an old dream.

We bought a campground on the shore of a lake. Both were very serene.

We planned to own it seven years, sell and then retire.

We bought some problems we could not know and the challenge then grew higher.

We met the challenge but it took some time and the years passed quickly by.

And what we see now in year twenty-two is most pleasing to the eye.

We met so many people and many became dearest friends,

Who returned year after year to enjoy our campground again.

But time has a way of changing things not always what we want to see or say,

As each year passed by we all grew older, some friends were lost along the way.

Now the day has come to sell our dream for other plans and rest.

We cannot fault those who moved away, a move they thought was best.

They feared our campground would be transformed to houses on the lake.

This we could not guarantee, it was a choice they had to make.

But let it be known to friends and all, the memories are great, the regrets are few,

We loved this trip we shared and we’re glad to have shared it with you.



Dennis * Dear Lord…

Lord * Yes!

Dennis * Who said that?

Lord * I did, Dennis. You called.

Dennis * Is that you, Lord?

Lord * Yes, Dennis, why do you ask?

Dennis * Well, I was surprised when you answered.

Lord * Dennis, I always answer.

Dennis * Well, yah, but not with a voice! I was not expecting a voice. It started me! You never answered like that before.

Lord * I know, Dennis, but I had a free moment when your call came in. What’s on your mind?

Dennis * Well, nothing real important. I could send you an email if you are busy.

Lord * Dennis, you know I don’t need email. What was it you wanted?

Dennis * Like I said, Lord, nothing important. I was just wondering about something.

Lord * You can tell me, Dennis.

Dennis * Ok. I was wondering how much time I’ve got. You know, before I pass on, expire, so to speak from Earth. I’ve got a long list of projects I’m working on for my family and some friends and I wonder if I can finish them before you call me?

Lord * Now, Dennis. I know you very well. I know you always have a list of projects you want to do; more than you can ever finish because you keep adding to your list all the time. Isn’t that right?

Dennis * Well, yes, But you know I like to do things for other people that will make them happy.

Lord * Yes, I know, Dennis, I know everything.

Dennis * I thought you did. I have always believed you know everything. That’s why I thought you might tell me how much time I have so I know what projects I should finish first. Do you know what I mean, Lord?

Lord * Dennis, I told you I know everything. Are you questioning me?

Dennis * Oh no, Lord, but I am trying to understand. You see, Lord, for example, I write stories for my grandchildren and other children. I want them all to be happy and I don’t know how many stories I can write. I don’t know if I should just write a few very special stories while I am still here. Do you know what I am trying to say?

Lord * Yes, I know, Dennis. I cannot tell you how much time you have left on Earth. It is a question that nearly everyone has and many have asked. What purpose would it serve if you knew? Would you try to finish your best ever work if you knew? No, Dennis, I know you would not. That is what we might call “Human Nature.” You would quit, whatever you were working on. You would quit, Dennis and that is why I will not tell you or anyone. Time is not the issue, but what you do with your time is what life is all about. Understand Dennis?

Dennis * Well, I guess so, Lord, but I was thinking you don’t need any retired Chamber of Commerce executives in Heaven, so maybe I have some extra time.

Lord * Maybe Dennis, but we always have need for storytellers. Was there anything else, Dennis?

Dennis * Just one thing, Lord. I’ve received many blessings. I am sure I haven’t thanked you for all of them and I do now, if that is ok. Can we talk again sometime?

Lord * Sure, Dennis, my lines are always open.

Dennis * Thank you, Lord, Bless You!

Lord * Dennis, that’s my line. Bless you. Keep doing what you are doing. I’ll call you if I need you.

Dennis * I know, Lord, thank you. But…

Lord * Sorry, Dennis, no buts.

The End

November 2005

The Quiet Hug

When a friend loses a loved one, feelings are hard to express.
No matter how hard you try, a quiet hug will say it best.

When a friend is hurting, no matter what you say,
Every word is awkward and only gets in the way.

So when a friend is in deep sorrow, my quiet hug means I care,
About our friendship and the memories we will ever share.

When a friend’s heart is hurting, no words can stop the pain,
But with my hug they will know my heart feels the same.



Time continues speedily along its course,

Dragging us, kicking and screaming, to no avail.

Fighting with all our might and human powers,

Against some great force, knowing we will surely fail.

Kicking and screaming, then begging and praying,

But time is oblivious to our human way.

And we are so helpless, pleading at its mercy,

While time, with a wry smile, says, “Have a good day.”



Like an old pair of slippers, they’re comfortable and warm,
Whether we saw them last year or yesterday morn.
Old Friends are special like that.

Like a ray of sunshine on a gloomy, dreary day,
Or the beauty of Nature adding cheer to our way,
Old Friends are special like that.

Like the sound of laughter shared as the answer indeed,
Or the gentle springtime rain, growing flowers all need.
Old Friends are special like that.

Like the scent of pretty flowers or the evergreen trees,
Or the moments we’ve shared becoming fond memories,
Old Friends are special like that.

Priceless, strong, helpful and pleasure,
Funny, supportive and always a treasure.
Old Friends are special like that.



His name is Marvin, an Iowa boy, who now in years is over eighty
His hometown, Council Bluffs is on the river of the great Missouri
During working years he drove trucks, eighteen wheelers, the big ones.
A million plus safe miles, often double trailers o’er the western mountains.

He had three loves, antique cars, Iowa land and his wife, Ann
Who was not jealous of the other two, she loved her trucker man.
He sometimes came home with an antique car in his big moving van.
And surprised her several times, buying more of that Iowa bottom land.

When retirement came it wasn’t easy for this much traveled man.
Florida during the winter months wasn’t his scheduled plan
It was there we first met and bonded in friendship so nice
And we soon learned he was walking per his doctors’ advice.

At first he was walking six or seven miles every day
We only walked one or two and thought his mind went astray
Then as time progressed his daily walk was eleven mile
The walkin’est man we’ve ever known and always with a smile

As the years passed the walkin’ man’s eyesight began to grow dim
Until his Winter trips to Florida it was necessary to end
We missed the sound of his steady steps, his cheery smile and hello
Years later we stopped at the “Bluffs” and we surprised him so.

We saw his three loves, antique cars, Iowa land and his wife Ann
His failed eyesight stopped his walking which we understand
And now though times and miles have placed us so very far apart
Memories are fond of the Walkin’ man who walked into and stayed in our heart.



The old bricks of the fireplace have a story untold,
Where the golden flames sing and dance and chase the cold.
Carved white letters spelling PEACE, about four inches high,
Share the mantel with St. Nick, a mini, nearby.
What stories could be heard if the bricks would let them go.
About the past and people, interesting to know.

Were the old bricks once part of a house long gone,
Or a flower box or mailbox walkway and beyond?
Or a farmhouse wall watching a family grow.
Keeping them warm from winters’ freezing snow.
I stare at the old fireplace bricks and ponder the past.
As I add a new log to make the welcome fire last.

How peaceful it is as embers crackle and pop.
The spell’s broken briefly by a burning logs drop.
How we love sharing this time for the young and old.
With old bricks of the fireplace and their stories untold.



A good friend sent us a present and it was a nice surprise.
A quilted piece, twelve inches square, so pleasing to our eyes.

A snowflake designed, snowy white on a field of pretty blue.
We’ve hung it on the wall where our living room comes into view.

Trillions of snowflakes fall every year. No two alike they claim.
But ours is there every day to see and admire without change.

To remember the beauty of winter and friends ever so great.
All part of the many blessings we truly appreciate.



The road of life has many turns,
And while we’re young it matters not,
We go with those who take us,
Usually enjoying the ride a lot.

The road of life has many bumps,
As we grow the “owies” are short pain.
Rub it! Rub it! Someone will say,
Telling us not to do it again!

The road of life has potholes, too.
Like when bad choices are made,
In the spirit or the quest for fun,
And instead we become afraid.

The road of life has many curves,
That take us to places we cannot see.
Causing struggles we did not need,
Testing our desire, commitment and anxiety.

The road of life has many detours.
Distractions that create impulsive moves.
That sometimes delay or alter our progress,
Until wisdom returns to proper grooves.

The road of life offers many heartaches,
And some from truelove we cannot understand.
And yet if we’re lucky family and friends,
Will help us get back on track again.

The road of life can be filled with joy,
And wonderful times, but we must never forget.
There will be turns and bumps and potholes,
Curves and detours and heartaches to fret.

The road of life doesn’t always give us a choice,
But when it does we must do our very best,
By leaning on those good examples and experiences,
Then our faith will take care of all the rest.



It is interesting to me, as we glide across the sea,
And a wide-band rainbow appears,
Adding isolated beauty
To the dark island mountains that we see.

Though it’s hard to say for sure, the shore’s a mile or more away
The grayish clouds are thick and low
Engulfing the Alaskan sky
Presenting multi gray shades to the eye.

There’s a pretty sharp chill in the air, a feeling not so rare,
Clouds like a cotton sheet are damp,
But the sky is empty of rain
Though we wear our rain jackets just the same.

The Island Princess, our ship, a luxury hotel on a trip
Our nice cabin is on deck eight,
The balcony lets us watch the shoreline go
Big, seven decks above and seven below.

The view is really hazy now, as the cloud sits on our bow,
A lonely Gull is now flying by
Aimlessly on an airy ride,
The Gull is searching, glancing side to side.

The islands now are far behind, they are out of sight and mind
We scan the rolling, blue water
For Earth’s largest mammal the Whale
Slowly we search the surface, to no avail.

This is day one; we have six more and fifteen decks to explore
It’s easy to get lost for sure
But one thing we can always find
The food, outstanding always, total peace of mind.


The Lady in the Sunday Hat

It does appear to be the last act of an earlier time,
Like a snapshot that was frozen while the decades passed it by.
An elder Lady sitting somber always catches my eye.
It’s the Lady in the Sunday Hat, today it’s rosy wine.

Sometimes the hat is like a white sombrero, though much smaller,
Sometimes yellow, brown or blue, but never without is a fact.
I think she has a hat of every possible color
Yet, in Church there’s only one, on The Lady in the Sunday Hat.

I suppose there was a day and time when hats all ladies wore
It was expected, even a tradition to be exact,
But I think I’m witness to a tradition that is no more
Except for one each week on the Lady in the Sunday Hat.


Dennis C. Orvis

We have this huge treasure chest
Where great memories are kept like new,
And in one corner we’ve saved
Our wonderful memories with you.

Oh the joy it does give us
When we play them over again,
And then we look at each other
And say, “Do you remember when?”

So how we thank you once again
For sharing special times in the past
For laughter we could not stop
And memories that forever last

Memories so important,
They bring us joy and such great pleasure
You really make our hearts so full
With memories we will always treasure.


As I Sail

As I sail through the sky, made so blue by the Great One
And those that see me look with wishing wonder,
They think I’m ever searching, always searching for food,
But they are wrong, I need no food, my soul is full.

As I sail through the sky, so endless by the Great One
And those that see me look longing with envy.
They dream of riding the air so easy like me
With grace and beauty and quiet peace in their soul.

As I sail through the sky, in pure peace with the Great One
And those that see me, ever in awe of my space
A Heavenly place without the turmoil man creates
Wishing they could be flying so high next to me.

As I sail through the sky, a billboard for the Great One
I am His skywriting without words, His message
Of peace, love and goodwill the world has long forgotten
And yet, it is never too late for those who can see

As I sail through the sky, a symbol of belief and
Peace forever, still waiting for you and mankind free
Undeserved patience and forgiving hope that only
The Great One can offer. Believe and come sail with me.


Some People

Now there are cat people
And there are dog people
Of course, there are even horse people
But only a few, maybe one or two frog people
They are pretty rare to see

Now cat people like to stay up all night
Dog people howl when the moon is bright
Horse people run with a steady trot
Frog people sing ribbit-ribbit very loud and
Dance a funny hop

Now there are all kinds of people
So next time you go to the mall
Just look around and see what you can see

Some people will cackle
Some people move like water bugs,
Or even turtles you might see

But if you hear one singing ribbit-ribbit,
Hopping here and there,
Just smile and give a friendly wave,
Because it might just be me!



The pair of sliding glass doors
Are trimmed neatly in satin white

With fifteen small glass panes
Each, allowing through daytime light

Matching candle holders
Frame the entry’s view

Designed in twisted black iron
Stately in what they do

And with two candles each
Matching the walls of green

Contrasting the red valance
Against the outdoor scene

There’s calmness here
The peace nature has brought

It’s a wonderful place
To stare and wonder in thought


The New Revolution

One by land and two by sea,
The new revolution started today
Paul Revere rode in a pickup truck
To an election watched by the U.S.A.

The prize, Kennedy’s liberal seat
Nearly fifty years without sway
A breeze, no sweat, no worry
Not a chance, unnoticed in the U.S.A.

Then late polls gave storm warnings
Chills shook Washington; leaders jumped into the fray
They flocked to Massachusetts
Determined to keep hold of the U.S.A.

Disappointment would be theirs to worry
The Minutemen rose again; the true American way

The bridge at Concord, Patriot jammed
Smiles at Bunker Hill spread across the U.S.A

The people spoke, Camelot was over
The liberal train; a screeching halt in Boston Bay
A Republican with a shocking win
Stopped Washington cold with new hope for the U.S.A.

What can Brown do for you?
To borrow a slogan from UPS today.
Three days later health reform is dead
Quote the President “jobs is the goal for the U.S.A”


The Odyssey of Space

How small it is, like a gnat with its tail on fire.
Moving at hundreds of miles per hour
Into space with its courageous crew climbing higher and higher

How loud it was, thunderous noise as engines roared
Reverberating across the surrounding waters
As the spaceship became a beautiful flyer

How fast it is gone! Into its orbiting ride
For my generation it’s Buck Rogers coming alive
Where dreams and visions become photos to trace

What discoveries wait? What mysteries be?
Astounding pictures of planets and galaxies
And the amazing thrill of floating in space

Kennedy was President when it started
It seems like so long ago
I’ve been privileged to see many lift offs
Beautiful night shots all aglow

The shuttle program end was announced
The international program will carry on
I don’t’ know what America’s role will be
But in my mind and heart, it is always number one.


America! Four parts

And There’s More – America Part I
A Trilogy

I have seen the purple mountain majesties
I have seen from sea to shining sea

I have seen the endless golden plains
I have seen majestic eagles flying free

And there’s more – America

I have seen New England’s foliage in the fall
I have seen the Great Smokies shades of gray

I have seen the snow-covered Rockies above all
I have seen the Alamo down Mexico’s way

And there’s more – America

I have seen from the top of Miss Liberty
I have seen from the Empire building so near

I have seen the rushing water of Niagara Falls
I have seen the Florida Keys water so clear

And there’s more – America

I have seen the view from Pike’s Peak simply stunning
I have seen the Mississippi from the paddle wheels spin

I have seen the Petrified Forest, Nature’s stone art
I have seen the World’s greatest ditch, the Grand Canyon

And there’s more – America

I have seen Mount Rushmore’s Presidential stone faces
I have seen the shine of the Golden Gate Bridge

I have seen the giant redwoods, in awe of their size
I have seen the destruction of the Mount St. Helen’s ridge

And there’s more – America

I have seen Mount McKinley rise on the horizon
I have seen Alaska’s glaciers, blue ice carved by time

I have seen Old Faithful burst high into the air
I have seen great parks, Yellowstone, the Arches and Zion

And there’s more – America

I have seen the darkness deep in Carlsbad Cavern
I have seen the brightness of the Badlands in hot sun

I have seen America’s sunrise at East Point Maine
I have seen the Great Plains where the antelope run

And there’s more – America

Oh yes, there is so much more, the bucket list grows on
A Country surely blessed, with unmatched diversity

One cannot possibly see it all in a lifetime
The example to the world for freedom and liberty

And there is more – America, much more!

The arch in St. Louis, Preservation Hall on Bourbon Street,
Lighthouses on the Outer Banks, Magnolia trees in bloom,
D.C. when cherry trees blossom, Vegas at night
Chicago in the summer, and Broadway in tune

And there’s more – America, Oh, there is so much more!

March 2010

And There’s More – America, Part II
A Trilogy

I have seen the Flag at Fort Sumter
I have seen Lincoln’s shiny nose in Springfield Illinois

I have seen the Great Salt Lake, so icky
I have seen Mark Twains’ home in Hannibal, Huck Finn was a boy

And there’s more – America

I have seen the Old Man on the Mountain
I have seen the narrow Rio Grande, five feet from Mexico

I have seen the bottom interior of Hoover Dam
I have seen the Four Corners where tall cactus grow

And there’s more – America

I have seen Atlanta’s marvelous Cyclorama
I have seen and marveled the Dinosaur National Park

I have seen the Blue and Gray quiet of Gettysburg
I have seen the New York skyline from a cruise ship after dark

And there’s more – America

I have seen the Arizona resting at Pearl Harbor
I have seen the monuments at Washington

I have seen Nature’s beauty in the Ozarks
I have seen through tears the pain and pride of Arlington.

And there’s more – America

I have seen the mysterious cliff dwellings
I have seen Crater Lake bordered with fresh white snow

I have seen lava flows at Craters of the Moon
I have seen small herds of the shaggy, brown buffalo

And there’s more – America

I have seen the sunrise from top of Stone Mountain
I have seen the mysterious Desert of Maine

I have seen the wonders of Wisconsin Dells
I have seen the long causeway at Lake Pontchartrain

And there’s more – America

I have seen the pines and cool waters of Lake of the Woods
I have seen Hot Springs where water will never freeze

I have seen the moss-covered trees of Okefenokee Swamp
I have seen Blue Springs, playground of Florida Manatees

And there’s more – America

I have seen the Little Brown Church in the Vail
I have seen Iowa’s Grotto of Redemption at West Bend

I have seen the seventy-six trombones of River City
I have seen the tall cornfields that never seem to end

And there’s more – America

I have seen the theaters of Branson Missouri
I have seen the great story – The Black Hills Passion Play

I have seen Natures paint brush of the Black Hills
I have seen the awesome view from the Blue Ridge Parkway

And there’s more – America

I have seen the famous Brooklyn Bridge and the Natural Bridge
I have seen the boardwalks of Atlantic City and Charleston

I have seen the Biltmore House, Graceland and Monticello
I have seen the Mariachi play in a San Antonio Mission

And there’s more – America

I have seen the marvelous Mall of America
I have seen in Kansas endless fields of grain

I have seen the downtown mall of Kalamazoo
I have seen the rainbows of Hawaii in the rain

And there’s more – America

I have seen the San Francisco cable cars
I have seen the beautiful horses in Kentucky Hills

I have seen the Mansions by Newport’s’ Atlantic
I have seen the excitement of harness racing thrills

And there’s more – America

I have seen the cotton fields of Mississippi
I have seen the Georgia peach trees loaded to the ground

I have seen the vineyards of Upstate New York
I have seen fields of pineapples where the luaus are found

And there’s more – America, much more!

From Ellis Island to Puget Sound
From Big Bend National Park to the Great Lakes,
Rock City to Chimney Rock to Rock Rapids
From Georgetown to Klamath Falls to Hilton Head.
How blessed we are in America!

And there’s more – America, Oh, there is so much more!

April 2010

Part III -And There’s More – America –
A Trilogy

I have seen the elephant in the Anchorage zoo
I have seen Appleton Wisconsin in the spring

I have seen the White Buffalo, Jamestown North Dakota
I have seen Philly where the Liberty Bell does ring

And there’s more – America

I have seen Disneyland at Anaheim
I have seen the airboat ride in the sunshine state
I have seen Disney World in Orlando
I have seen the steam engine train ride in Wolfeboro, great

And there’s more – America

I have seen the grand canyon of Georgia
I have seen the beauty of Estes National Park

I have seen the Pocono’s of Pennsylvania
I have seen the Black Angel of Council Bluffs, so dark

And there’s more – America

I have seen the insides of an atomic sub
I have seen the awesome carrier, Lexington

I have seen the Seashore Trolley Museum in Maine
I have seen the famous Faneuil Hall in Boston

And there’s more – America

I have seen the Glass Museum in Corning
I have seen the Ohio Museum for Zane Grey

I have seen the Whaling Museum in New Bedford Mass
I have seen the Shelburne Museum in Green Mountain way

And there’s more – America

I have seen many wonderful museums,
Grandma Moses, Norman Rockwell, Barnum, Popeye and more

I have seen the Grand Old Opry in Nashville
I have seen the beauty of the Oregon shore

And there’s more – America

I have seen Dixville Notch where the Nation votes first
I have seen Dollywood in the Pigeon Forge Hills

I have seen Deer Forest and Santa Claus land
I have seen Battleship Cove with Big Mamie thrills

And there’s more – America

I have seen the gorgeous Master’s Course at Augusta GA
I have seen Daytona Beach where the autos can drive

I have seen the Golf Hall of Fame where legends prevail
I have seen the Washington zoo and Panda’ live

And there’s more – America

I have seen Jewel Cave, burned my fingers on the lamp
I have seen Busch Gardens, a Tampa Florida treat

I have seen the Mackinac Bridge in the Michigan thumb
I have seen Arcadia National park where Fundy tides retreat

And there’s more – America

I have seen Elvis’ home in Tupelo Mississippi
I have seen the Little White House in Warm Springs GA

I have seen the Billy Brothers clocks in Decorah Iowa
I have seen Bryce Canyon where time has no say

And there’s more – America

From the Grand Tetons to Narragansett Bay
From the Corn Palace at Mitchell to Myrtle Beach
From Padre Island to Williamsburg,
Where Washington and Jefferson still speak,
From Rocket Center at Huntsville
To Cape Canaveral’s launching of greatness
And a nostalgic ride in the Ford Tri-motor plane!

And there’s more America,
So much more.
Our Country is truly blessed!

May 2010

Part IV And There’s More – America

A Trilogy plus One

Author’s Note: When I first wrote the poem And There’s More America! in March of 2010, I did not plan it to be part I of a trilogy. Then writing about things I have seen while traveling our fifty states of America the words just seemed to flow. The words came so easy as part II and part III in April and May followed as a trilogy.

And yet, as the title proclaims And There’s More America, there really is more. Over the Fourth of July we visited Washington D.C. twenty-seven years since we last visited our Nations Capitol. I was moved by the new monuments like World War II and my war, the Korean War.

I was surprised the number of visitors to the Washington Monument is limited each day. When I first visited the Washington Monument in the summer of 1951, we walked up the many stair steps and rode the elevator down. I’m told now that “walking the steps” is no longer allowed. I would guess the reason is graffiti and vandalism. Pity. The streets to the monuments now are blocked with cement barricades. Security has replaced beauty. Washington has changed. America has changed. But my memories do not change and I will cherish them forever. DCO
Part IV

I have seen the colorful cranberry harvest at Wareham Mass.
I have seen Kancamangus Highway bumper to bumper when leaves display.

I have seen New England’s covered bridges
I have seen the Portland Head Light, President Washington Okayed.

And there’s more – America

I have seen Slater Mill in Rhode Island
I have seen Ellis Island, where immigrants arrived with a Prayer

I have seen the U.S.S. Constitution resting in Boston harbor
I have seen Fort McHenry where “our flag was still there!”

And there’s more – America

I have seen the Rock in Plymouth Mass.
I have seen the beautiful whales off New England’s bay

I have seen the house where Lizzie Borden lived
I have seen the Green Wall where the Red Sox play

And there’s more – America

I have seen Mt. Vernon, President Washington’s home
I have seen at the Kennedy Center special events sing

I have seen the Lincoln and Jefferson monuments
I have seen the Smithsonian with so much of everything

And there’s more – America

I have seen the Tall Ships with our “Eagle” sailing proud.
I have seen the Great Lakes from the North and Southern Shore

I have seen the Wright Brothers Museum at Kitty Hawk
I have seen the wonderful harbor in Baltimore

And there’s more – America

I have seen the museums of Chicago
I have seen Wrigley Field with its’ ivy wall

I have seen Lombard, the crooked street of Frisco
I have seen the Sea Gull monument, Salt Lake so tall

And there’s more – America

I have seen Route 66, a road so famous
I have seen the New York home of FDR and Campobello, too

I have seen Hershey Park where chocolate rules
I have seen nature’s beauty at the Omaha Zoo

And there’s more – America

I have seen citrus groves from a colorful balloon floating above
I have seen St. Augustine that takes us to years gone by

I have seen Florida’s Sunken Garden and inventions in Edison’s’ home
I have seen Lion Country, Parrot Jungle and Sea World, pleasant to the eye

And there’s more – America

Yes, there is more, so much more. Samuel Clemens home in Hartford, President Jackson’s home, Hermitage in Tennessee, the golf courses in Georgia’s state parks and even the largest, oldest tree in Louisiana. How blessed we are in America. How blessed I am to have seen these wonderful things in our great Country.

And there’s more America!

August 2010

Music of the Heart

Poetry is words set to music of the heart
We will not all hear it the same. Some will hear
none at all.

But there will be one who will hear a symphony
That no other person can hear and the lucky
hear best of all.

So as you read a poem and the words drift into
your eyes

Let your heart listen to the pictures it paints and
expect a wonderful surprise!

Enjoy the music!


Sunshine and Rainbows

A familiar old question often comes to our mind.
Why do bad things happen to good people? It’s terribly unkind.

We have heard life is what we make it, which isn’t totally true.
Some roads are better than others and some we do not chose to do.
Hopefully the good times will outweigh all others, a positive refrain.
We’ll have memories we can share and yet the question will remain.

I’m afraid there is no answer that would begin to satisfy.
To say that is just the way it is, will never answer the WHY.
I know of nothing to ease the pain our hearts are feeling today.
Except the hope we have and our Prayers, to send along the way.

As life goes on, memories will play an important part
By bringing sunshine and rainbows to troubled hearts


Note: I wrote this in tribute to some friends that simply were not lucky in life.

None Can Stand

I have a couple questions for all members of
Congress, the House and the Senate

How could you pass the Health Care Bill
without knowing what was in it?

How would the Statesmen of the first Congress
judge your Congressional action?

Your public approval rate is a record low,
and as Statesmen NONE CAN STAND.


A Wish for My Country

From every corner of our great Country
I’ve seen the beauty the Lord has made,
Plus works of many proud Americans
enhancing the scene

Though mistakes too, are obvious, caused by us,
imperfect as we are
And adjustments are often slow
to repair the errant dream

But there is a spirit in my Country
that remains ever strong
To volunteer one’s effort and
resources that need to be

To solve the problems, correct the ills,
always in search of progress
May the sun forever rise and set on my Country,
America, Land of the free.


The Brightest BeaconFlying – 2011

Our flight was scheduled for twelve fifty-five
We left in time to arrive two hours early
Getting to the airport was only a thirty-minute ride
We had a casual breakfast; there was no need to hurry.

The security lines were long, but moving well
Most flyers, not all, are aware of the search routine
Plastic tubs for belts, shoes, metal, just don’t ring the bell
Made it through and dressed; I didn’t forget anything

It was a short two-hour flight to Orlando
Our ride was waiting; we’ll be home in half that time
Flying today lacks the pleasure it had a few years ago
It’s the price of security, but still, the majority says, “It’s just fine.”


Time for a Change

It is generally believed the slogan Time for a Change
Has elected more politicians than any other
It is unfortunate the resulting change
Is one of three, too little, too much or none
As just right is not another

By the time a person is elected
We know their sole is no longer theirs
It is committed you see
Such is the modern experience
When the elected control the purse
Of a helpless democracy

Until those who do the voting
To force decisions just and true
So a great America can prevail

The present system is designed to perpetuate
Time for a Change will continue electing
While America’s cries are of no avail.


Road Improvements

How we hate the delays,
Inconveniences, the irritations
The inconsiderate, the long waits,
Flaring tempers, some with verbal abuse

And now the road improvements are done.
The “working” signs and the orange cones
Bad actions and emotions are nowhere in sight.
All forgotten, the road is now open to normal use.


I Saw a Miracle Today

I saw a miracle today,
I could almost say I felt it, but
That wouldn’t be quite true
You see I had a heart problem
With several blockages in
Some veins needing a special touch

My doctor, whom I just met, with his
Grayish beard and a smile disarmed
My fears and questions too
He did it with a small incision and
Sending his tiny tools gliding
Through veins with a talent much

He installed two stents so very little
I cannot imagine
Completing a perfect task
So carefully designed to protect
Me from any stroke or heart attack
That can maim or kill

We’re confidently expecting his
Deliberate work to keep me
Healthy with results to last
I saw a miracle today
My doctor perhaps or his gift
It was a successful thrill

February 2012

Confessions of a Politician

We have decided to be undecided
Our conclusion is no intrusion

Therefore on the feelings we express
There were all no’s, not a single yes

And we skirted down the middle
Like a water drop on the hot griddle

We have no intention to vote our intervention,
Or any kind of extension

Don’t you see, on that we all agree

We had another busy, difficult day
We wouldn’t have it any other way.


Hear the Angels Singing

Hear the Angels Singing.
Hear the Church bells ringing,
It’s time to hear the Lord’s calling
It’s not your time
It’s not my time
It’s our Lord’s time
And for his great love we’re falling

Halleluiah, halleluiah, halleluiah
We can hear the Angles singing
For you and for me and everyone
About the great love he’s bringing!


A Tribute

Her name was Rita. She never missed a poem in the Ledger
And when the poem was one of mine
My phone would ring, late afternoon,
The voice was clear and elderly sweet about the usual time

Sometimes she would say, “Dennis, you made me cry.
I lost my husband years ago; you brought beautiful memories back to me”
And then she would pause to catch her thoughts, I’m sure
Or she might say, “You got me, Dennis, I’m laughing so hard I cannot see.”

Rita left us not long ago, she was ninety-one.
She’s in a better place I know, with her husband, once again
In the poetry corner where the Angels always sing,
I want her to know (and she probably does,) how much I miss my friend.


Stories and Storybooks

We cannot measure the value of a story
read to a child
We don’t know how imagination grows with stories
of nature’s wilds
We don’t know how story characters become
secret friends
We don’t know the joy they feel when the story
happily ends

We don’t know what great quest for knowledge
For books, stories or writing they might acquire
We don’t know how their future might be shaped
But storybooks can create a learning fire

Millions of children will never see or hear a
Most are throughout the world, but the U.S.
shares the rest
It is our wish that those you love are
indeed fortunate
We believe those with storybooks are
truly blessed.


The Other Side of Golf

Some people think golf is a crazy game,
Hitting the little white ball, then hitting it again

Three shots or four or maybe five is par
And every time you play the course is always the same

I’ve been playing now over seven decades,
Through the years many memories remain

Some years I played more than others
Oh, how I loved that crazy game

You see golf is not just simply
Hitting or chasing a dimpled ball

Oh, no, you see, golf is much more to me
It’s bonding with nature, the trees, the sky, the birds and all

Listen carefully as we move along our way
Hear the chatter of a noisy, yakking Blue Jay

Listen too, above us in the blue summer sky
Searching the water, I hear that Osprey cry

How many Cardinals have I heard today?
How many Woodpeckers pecking in the tall pines?

How can one measure this glorious time?
Oh yes, it’s more than golf, this golfing day of mine


Dear Lord

“Dear Lord”
“Who’s that?”
“It’s me, Dennis, you called?”
“Yes I did, but you’ve never answered like this before.”
“I know, Dennis, but I had a free moment when your call came in. What do you want, Dennis, I’m very busy.”
“I’m sure your are. Look Lord, I could send you an email instead of taking up your time right now.”
“Dennis, you know I don’t take emails. What is it you have on your mind?”
“OK, Lord, but it’s not for me. I’m doing ok. It’s about my friend. He is in the hospital very sick. He’s been sick for a long time. The doctors have said they have done all they can for him.”
“Yes, I know, Dennis, I know everything. What do you want?”

“Yes, Lord, I know that. I guess you know I’ve sent several prayers. I’m really worried, Lord, I’m wondering if my friends number is up, would you take him in your loving arms and hold him? He’s a good man. I don’t know if he is perfect, but he is a good man. Or Lord, if his number is not up yet, could you stroke his gray hair so he will know you are there with him? Do you know what I mean, Lord?”

“Yes, Dennis, I know what you mean.”
“I know that Lord, you know everything. I forgot for a moment. Anyway, thanks for listening and thanks again for your love.”
“Yes, Dennis, I always listen. Be at peace. I have your friend in my hands and because you care, you have my love.”

“Thank you, Lord. Bless you!”

“That’s my line, Dennis.”

“I know, Lord, but I feel like I needed to say it.”

“Bless you, Dennis.”
“Thank you again, Lord, and Amen.”


Tuck, the Board Game

Tuck is a board game that requires some careful thought
I don’t recommend dozing, you might get caught
Kings remember, send other players back home
It’s fun, but watch out for your partner and your own

The cards can be good or something quite rotten
They’re very good when aces and kings are gotten
It’s difficult trying to move your tees to your bank
But switches with jack’s means your partner to thank

It’s a frustrating game in too many ways
Still, it’s a fun way to pass time on those rainy days
It’s fun, too, to win after a tough game and such
But I warn you, it’s dangerous to brag too much.


An Oversight Milestone

I have a three-ring binder divided in three sections
I keep the records of my writings there

Non-fiction, fiction and poetry, numbered, dated and
Total words
Important to me though I rarely share

The non-fiction section shows many words
Five hundred twenty-three thousand one hundred eighty-two

Expressed in one hundred seventy-nine pieces
And every word contained as I remember is true

The fiction section is my favorite, I like the stories
And the characters even more

My children’s story Little Jude and Midnight
Is number one hundred and eighty-four

I should mention here a milestone reached,
With total words three hundred fifty thousand forty-four

The third section is poetry which I feel easy to write
The last poem reached number six hundred twenty-three

The word total is ninety-nine thousand, nine hundred ninety-six
I should have looked, adding four more words is not challenge to me

But wait, an oversight, I skipped number five hundred ninety-five
If I use this one I can fill the gap

With one hundred ninety-five words here,
I will pass the hundred thousand milestone

WOW! WOW! WOW! What do you think of that?


Coincidence or Design

Was it coincidence the six of us attended the Church supper? Perhaps.
Was it a coincidence the Pastor’s wife came to our table to say hello? Perhaps.

Was it a coincidence my two friends started bragging about my stories? Perhaps.
Was it a coincidence one said, “give him one word, he’ll write you a story? Perhaps.

And then she said, “Jordan,” her grandson, born with muscles that could not relate
Though unable to walk or talk, he had an envious smile and a motorized wheelchair
He could operate

I later learned he responded to Santa Claus and trains
From this tidbit of information I wrote a story in a couple hours

About Jordan going to the circus with a new friend,
A mouse named Little Jude, who wore a baseball cap with magic powers

One story, I knew was not enough and I proceeded to write four more
With exciting adventures the two of them shared, a labor of love, you see

I hope that Jordan was able to enjoy the stories
I was pleased about the thank you’s sent to me

Jordan passed away last May, when his young heart stopped beating
Though young in years he touched so many hearts he left behind

Was it a coincidence that all of this happened? Perhaps.
I say perhaps, because I believe it may be part of a grand design.


The Ghostly Dream Ship

It’s an old friend this dream that visits me from time to time
Without cause or warning or care
In the form of an ancient three-masted ship
With every sail straining to hold the powerful angry air

The night is purple dark, broken only by the scattered eerie moonlight
Flashing on the white caps, splashing from the wooden hull
The old ship groans and screeches as it races on
Void of any crew, its many ropes stretched tight, singing to their mighty pull

It’s guided by ghosts I can’t see and I don’t know where it is going
I don’t know where it has been, but the ride must be wild and crazy
The sea is raging and the waves are fighting
From a flash of lightning I see the ship is named after me

Now the ship is disappearing from the moon, into the thick, waiting fog
And once again it is rapidly leaving me behind
It’s gone! The old ship is gone without a trace
And I wonder if that wild ride will ever be mine.


Heart Music

Poetry is heart music
Words can become melodies

Sadly not for everyone,
I’m sorry to say

To some it will be pretty
Some won’t hear a single note

But one or two, maybe you
Will hear a symphony


Poetry, yes or no

I met a man the other day
That made me kind of sad
He didn’t care for poetry
I told him he must be mad

Don’t you remember nursery rhymes?
When you were young and small
Remember how you felt
When Humpty Dumpty fell off the wall.

But poetry is nursery rhymes and more
It takes you any place you might wish to go
To say you don’t like it,
Friend, tell me it isn’t so.

Tell me, too, how about music?
Are there songs you like real well?
Don’t you know the words are poetry?
Can you dislike them now, pray tell?


An Old Friend

I met an old friend I haven’t seen for far too long.
“How are you doing?” I said

And he answered “What?”

“Me too,” I said in a kidding way, “but it hurts when it rains.”

He smiled and said, “Me too! It’s good to see you again.”

As he walked away, I guess maybe with his daughter, I heard him say,
“Who was that fella, he looked sort of familiar.”

I smiled. I met an old friend today. We saved the past and the future
For another time. It was good to see him again.


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