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Poems From the Porch

Updated on September 14, 2019
Jodah profile image

John has been writing poetry since his school days. He was awarded "Poet of the Year 2014" Hubby Awards and has had two poems become songs.

My back porch
My back porch | Source

Poems From the Porch: Introduction

Welcome! to my porch! To all my friends, followers, or even those who stumbled upon this piece of writing by accident.

Spring is upon us here in Australia and the temperature here is downright perfect. I won't say the weather itself is because we have just come through the driest winter on record, something like 87 bushfires have been raging across the state, and we are desperately in need of rain.

It is however beautiful to sit on my back porch, and I have recently taken the opportunity to sit out there and write. The back porch is also where the cats have their beds and get fed so I always have a couple of them for company. Sometimes, a wayward hen also makes her way up here in the hope of scoring some uneaten cat food. Oh well, the more the merrier as they say.

When considering names for this I considered "Verandah Verse" but I looked up the definition of verandah and it said: "a roofed platform along the outside of a house, level with the ground floor."

Whereas, porch is: "a covered entrance, or an outdoor seating area on a building or house. An example of a porch is a space to put chairs on which to sit outside during the summer."

Non-poetry lovers may suggest I should have called this "Bulshit Balcony," but, oh well, you can't please everyone. If you are still reading, thank you.

Anyway, I'm thinking of making this a series of random poems on any subject that pops into my head while relaxing on my porch. A bit like Mel Carriere's great Lunchtime Lit book reviews. I'll just gauge the reaction from comments first to decide if it is worthwhile pursuing as a series.


Click thumbnail to view full-size
Another porch view
Another porch view
Another porch view | Source
Source

Windows

My house has many windows

On each external wall,

Designed to catch the passing breeze

From whichever way it blows.


There are windows in our hearts as well

To let in love and trust.

Other things can sneak in too,

But windows can be closed.


Look through the glass to see outside,

Decide what to let in.

If it will not improve your life

Keep it locked out for good.


But, when you see the good appear

Throw those windows wide.

Take a deep breath, let it in,

Embrace it in your life.


My office windows
My office windows | Source

The Money Box

A money box sits on my desk

To place loose change within.

It's been around for many years,

An antique metal tin.


I slip the coins into the slot,

Until it overflows.

Cents and dollars soon add up,

I'm surprised how fast it grows.


I count the coins out into piles,

Depending on the size,

Then place them into plastic bags

To save the teller time.

The old tin money box
The old tin money box | Source

"Anytime but peak hour!"

is the banks but one request.

So, to comply with this small ask,

I'll do my very best.


To the bank I make my way

So they can weigh and count

My carefully hoarded treasure stash

To boost my sad account.


Inherited from my father,

Passed down from his before,

The old tin box upon my desk

Is mine to fill once more.


The money box, full to overflowing
The money box, full to overflowing | Source

There's Always Tomorrow - a Haiku

When darkness descends

And the day comes to an end,

Don't dwell on mistakes.


We have tomorrow.

God gives us another day

To right all our wrongs.

A Small Request - Personal Challenge

To help this idea to become a series I will need regular ideas for poems. I find any of the writing challenges issued by fellow Hubbers as great ways to get inspiration, so I was wondering if like "Ask Carb Diva" or "The Writers' Mailbag" readers could (instead of asking me questions) throw subjects at me and I will do my best to write poems about them. If you want to really test me you can even request the type of poem you want.

Some subjects may be challenging and take longer to make into a poem than others, and if I simply find a topic impossible I will let you know. If you have an idea either leave the request here or email me through "Contact John Hansen" at the top of my profile page.

Thank you in advance.

Another back porch view
Another back porch view | Source

© 2019 John Hansen

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    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 days ago from Queensland Australia

      Hello Tiyasha, thank you for reading and commenting. Much appreciated.

    • Cattaleya profile image

      Tiyasha Maitra 

      5 days ago from New Delhi

      These are very good reads. I especially like The Money Box.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      13 days ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you for reading, ps. I look forward to whatever prompt/challenge you come up with for me.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 

      13 days ago from sunny Florida

      I will be thinking of a poem type to send you, John. Opening windows and sometimes closing them is the one that resonates most with me. Take care of you. Angels are once again on the way ps

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      2 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Alyssa, thanks for reading this and your kind words. Porches are great.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      2 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      It is weird Ann, I don’t get notifications of new hubs by everyone I follow, only some. So, I miss a few as well. Anyway, you found the series so that’s what matters. I am glad you like this series idea and thanks for those prompts, they will be added to my list. I look forward to reading you upcoming hub for National Poetry Day. It seems to be different days, weeks and months in every country so I am sure it will coincide with one lol.

    • Alyssa Nichol profile image

      Alyssa 

      2 weeks ago from Ohio

      Hahahaha, I love the introduction where you discuss the different titles. I miss having a porch. Your office windows are lovely. What a wonderful idea for a series!

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 

      2 weeks ago from SW England

      I have no idea why I hadn't seen this series but I decided to start at the beginning rather than work backwards!

      What a great idea! Love your porch and I'm sure it gives you plenty of inspiration.

      These poems are great too. I have a money box like that, also handed down. We keep other coins in an old whisky optic from a pub; that takes a lot longer to fill but it provides a conversation piece as well as a fund to dip into if we're short!

      We've just had National Poetry Day (which I missed and for which I am currently sorting out a hub!). This year the subject was 'Truth' so my suggestion to you is to write some poems on that subject. You could always extend that to poems about 'Lies' or 'Questions'.... etc.

      I always enjoy your poetry, John, and your standard reaches higher and higher realms!

      Ann

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      2 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you for your great comment, Brenda. I enjoy both Spring and Autumn, as our Winters are not as harsh as yours. Never gets cold enough for snow. Summers can be hot but usually when we get most rain and we need it badly.

      Thanks for the suggestion "The true meaning of one's life." I will certainly add this to my list of requests.

    • Brenda Arledge profile image

      BRENDA ARLEDGE 

      2 weeks ago from Washington Court House

      Awe...springtime beginning..I feel so lucky for you.

      Here we are in fall, looking toward the dreaded winter months. Although it is fall we hit record high of 94 today.

      But alas it won't be long before the furniture must be put away until springtime nears it's head again.

      I hate this time of year for I love to be outside relaxing, taking nature in with all it's beauty.

      Your poems are quite good. Relaxing suits you well.

      The money tin I can relate with as I too embark upon this habit. It is a great way to take a vacation each year, or purchase something needed for the home.

      My one suggestion would be...the true meaning of one's life.

      As always, great writing.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      4 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you MsDora. I can certainly do a poem on “the innocence of childhood.” Adding it to my list now.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      4 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      I love the images: windows in our hearts, counting the coins to save the teller time, darkness descending on the day. The messages are clear and impactful.

      Can you please write some lines on the Innocence of Childhood?

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      4 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you for reading this Lora, and for supporting the idea for a series. I am glad you liked the poem Windows too.

    • Lora Hollings profile image

      Lora Hollings 

      4 weeks ago

      A wonderful idea to write a series taking inspiration from sitting on your back porch with the fall season now coming up! I especially love the poem entitled "Windows" which has a very good message, indeed!

      I don't think that you need any ideas from me, John. You are very adept at coming up with those yourself. I think this series is going to be a successful and very rewarding venture judging from your start! Thanks for the enjoyable read.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      4 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      No worries MizB, it’s never too late. Glad you liked the “bullshit balcony” idea. Oh and thank you for the comparison to Shel Silverstein, he is one of my insprations. I have added “Beauty and the Beast” to my list.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      4 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Hello Nithya, yes the money box holds much more than coins...there are memories within. Thanks for reading and for the kind comment.

    • MizBejabbers profile image

      Doris James MizBejabbers 

      4 weeks ago from Beautiful South

      John, somehow I missed this when you first published. I read your Porch 2 and came back to this one before commenting. I especially enjoyed the one about the old tin box because it brought back similar memories. I had to laugh about your Bullshit Balcony name because I think that at least once a month you should publish one of just that. I think I've compared your nonsense poetry to Shel Silverstein before. If I haven't, I will now. You write beauty and you write, well, maybe you could do a combination and call it the "Beauty and the Beast."

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 

      4 weeks ago from Dubai

      I enjoyed reading your poems, each one so beautifully expressed. The money box must be reminding you of your dad, a treasure to cherish. You have a lovely porch. Thank you for sharing these beautiful poems.

      I am looking forward to reading more in this series.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      4 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you for the kind words, Rasma, and for sharing your thoughts. I don’t think we have lilacs around here but it is most obvious when “the jacarandas” do. Maybe I could write about that, though “when the lilacs bloom” is the great name for a poem. I will add it to my list. Blessings.

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 

      4 weeks ago from Daytona Beach, Florida

      Love these poems. Have enjoyed many porches that have been so comfortable to relax on and my money gets saved in jars, not boxes. I don't know if you have a time like we used to have in Latvia when spring comes and lilacs bloom. If you do then one inspiration I could pass on to you is When Lilacs Bloom or When One season Changes to Another

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      4 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Thanks for visiting, Linda. You are right, the flood gates have already opened haha. Ok, “superlatives”...I shall have to put on my thinking cap.

    • Carb Diva profile image

      Linda Lum 

      4 weeks ago from Washington State, USA

      John, I loved this visit with you. It's just as relaxing as I had imagined it would be. You want inspiration? Be careful what you ask for, you might get it. It's certain the flood gates will open on this one. Here's one that I've been tossing around as I have just returned from a week-long vacation. "Superlatives."

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      4 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you Cynthia. I am one for holding onto the past to retain the memories. If something is not broken and can still be used especially if it has sentimental value. I appreciate your comment, take care.

    • Cyndi10 profile image

      Cynthia B Turner 

      4 weeks ago from Georgia

      Hi John, I like your poems and the photos that go with them. Your office windows are great and the back porch seems the perfect place to write.

      I especially like "The Money Box". It has such a nostalgic feel to it. I understood why when I reached the verse that says the money box belonged to your father. Using something that belonged to a loved one or continuing a habit that they may have had keeps us connected. Take care and write on!

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Hello, Marie. Thank you for that comment. Our bank used to like us to wrap coins, now they just issue press seal plastic bags with the denomination and amount written on them.

      I will add your request about plants named after feelings to my list.

    • Marie Flint profile image

      Marie Flint 

      5 weeks ago from Tawas City, Michigan USA

      Charming (really). I like the a-b-c-a rhyme pattern.

      Comment on loose change: our bank requires change be put into coin wrappers, each designating the type of coin and standard value, e.g. Quarters $10.

      I've been reading many articles about gardening. One article I especially loved was about how one gardener related her gardening experience with her emotions. Instead of naming the plant, she used the feeling, planting hope, removing despair, etc. Why not try a similar theme in a poem?

      Blessings!

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Yes, Spring is a lovely time of year, Diana and it is the topic of a lot of writing, well, the seasons are in general. I just pray that rain is not far away. It is good to hear what it is like on the other side of the world at the same time. Thank you for reading.

    • Diana Lee profile image

      Diana L Pierce 

      5 weeks ago from Potter County, Pa.

      Spring is my favorite time of year. With it rapidly approaching fall where I live I know winter will be here just as fast. Seasons changing gives great material for writing poetry. We seldom think about the seasons changing on the opposite side of the world being opposite also, perhaps learning about spring time in Australia will make dreaded cold weather seem less harsh to your friends in North America.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Hi Shauna, glad you like my porch. Yes we have coin wraps here and I used to do it that way but Now the bank gives you resealable plastic bags with the denomination and amount on them instead so I use those.

      “Smelly Sneakers?” Trust you haha. That should certainly be a fun one. Thanks.

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      5 weeks ago from Central Florida

      John, I love your porch. It looks so relaxing! I like "Bullshit Balcony", but it doesn't fit. Your writing is anything but bullshit!

      Your money tin heirloom is priceless! Do you not have coin wraps in Australia? When my change jar gets full, I roll the coins and take them to the bank. They come in denominations: $0.50/pennies, $2/nickels, $5/dimes and $10/quarters. Just a thought.

      I love the idea of asking your readers to challenge your poetry prowess.

      How 'bout this one?: Smelly Sneakers

      I look forward to this series, John. It'll be a lot of fun to see what you come up with.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you, Faruk. I appreciate you taking the time to read and comment.

    • Faruk Ahmad profile image

      Faruk Ahmad 

      5 weeks ago from Natore,Bangladesh

      awesome writing... thanks for share

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Rinita, thank you for reading and for sharing about your mother's money box. Yes, my porch is homey and imperfect. I am not one for perfection, in fact I like reusing and restoring as much as possible. Imperfections can be seen as 'character' or sometimes called 'rustic.'

      A letterbox is a great suggestion for the subject of a poem. I'll add that to my list.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you Li-Jen. Yes, when I am on the porch I will remember the poems. It is fun to write about personal things so that you capture the memories. I hope I didn't bite off more than I can chew, asking people to request poems.

    • Senoritaa profile image

      Rinita Sen 

      5 weeks ago

      Your porch is inviting, homely. Imperfect in a good sense. As to you starting a series, great idea and wish you the best.

      Your money-box took me back in time. My mother always had this habit of placing small changes in a tiny letter-box shaped money-box every week (she still does). She tried inculcating that habit in us, too. For a while I followed, after which cash transaction changed so rapidly that I gave up. That gives me an idea for you - a poem about an actual letter box. Although rarely used for personal letters any more, yet the memories it triggers could be worth writing about, if you wish to?

      Great rest of the poems, too. Stay well.

    • Li-Jen Hew profile image

      Li-Jen Hew 

      5 weeks ago

      Hi Jodah. Your porch looks lovely. And you are open about sharing what your porch looks like especially your money box. It's interesting to see you write about personal things and it becomes a fun thing to do because when you see your porch, you'll be able to remember your poem. Good luck on writing poems with topics thrown at you! Thanks for sharing.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you Shaloo. I actually have another money box next to the bed as well. When they are both full I visit the bank. I am always surprised how much change I have accumulated. Thank you for reading and for your kind comment.

    • swalia profile image

      Shaloo Walia 

      5 weeks ago from India

      I enjoyed all the poems. 'Windows' give an important message. Like you, I too have a 'money box' by my bedside (though it's not an inherited one). It's a habit since childhood. Isn't it amazing how small coins add up to a big amount overtime?

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      I am happy you liked “Windows” Linda. Thank you for reading, and it will be a series.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 

      5 weeks ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Your poems are enjoyable, John. I especially liked the one about opening windows into our lives. I would love to see this become a series.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Liz, I love both Spring and Autumn, I just want rain though. Ok, a poem about the joys of travelling..coming up. Be patient though, I didn’t count on receiving so many requests. I will try to do them in the order I received them. Take care.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Hi Cynthia, thanks for the great content moment. I have written about drought and bushfires in the past, but they are just becoming worse and more frequent around the world. I will put these on my list for “Poems From the Porch.”

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Yes, Ruby I can understand your being drawn to Heaven and angels. I will write something using those as a prompt. I am glad you like the idea of a series too. Blessings.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you for reading this Peg, and I appreciate your comment. The weather and long-time friends...good topics. Ok, I will certainly use those suggestions.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Chitrangada, you are fortunate to have both porch and verandah in your home. They are lovely relaxing areas. Thank you so much for reading.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Hi Eric, I kind of miss the “chicken chronicles” but after the initial few weeks they don’t get any views and end up unfeatured, however, I may resurrect the series at some stage. Yes, I could write a poem about them now and then. “Old friend reading glasses” sounds good, and love limericks. I’ll see what I can do.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Thanks for visiting my porch, Bill. “Hummingbirds” now there is a nice subject I have never written about.

    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      5 weeks ago from UK

      Your porch looks great. As we head into Autumn in the UK, I am slightly envious of you heading into Spring. Great poems as ever. How about one on the joys of travel?

    • techygran profile image

      Cynthia 

      5 weeks ago from Vancouver Island, Canada

      Hi John

      Your fine poems lend themselves to this challenge. I like the line in Windows about how windows can be closed (to possibilty, opportunity, growth?) i also like in The Money Box where you let the lament of your unrealized fortune abut the next verse"s line about inheriting the money tin from your father/grandfather-- no, you did not lose a monetary inheritance, but you seem to have inherited values like independence and being responsible for your own livelihood and wellbeing.

      How about those bush fires and the drought as reflections in Poems from the Porch? I, personally, am fascinated in how our planet is burning up in so many different corners and how personal certain blazes feel (like in Brazil's Amazon).

      All the best with your new poetry platform.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Richert 

      5 weeks ago from Southern Illinois

      I liked the topic of a porch, and I loved your poems. Lately, since losing my son Jackie, I've been drawn to poetry about heaven and angels. Hopefully you will write something along these lines. Whatever, I know it will be good. I love the idea of a series. I love Bill's series about Maggie. You become accustomed to the subject and you look forward to the next installment. Thank you for writing poetry. I can't imagine anyone not liking poetry and the fun of rhyming.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      5 weeks ago from Houston, Texas

      Thanks for sharing the photos of your porch and old tin moneybox with us. I particularly enjoyed your "Windows" poem as it carried much meaning. As to suggestions for future poems, the weather is always a good topic. The value of long-time friends is another. At our ages, we are starting to lose many of them which also brings up the loss as a topic.

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 

      5 weeks ago from New Delhi, India

      I liked your porch very much and I can imagine how relaxing, you must be feeling, sitting there. A blessing for a creative writer, like you.

      Your poem is beautifully expressed, as always. And the idea of a series about it, also sounds interesting.

      Yes, a verandah is different from a porch, because verandahs are not covered. I like both and fortunately I have both in my home, though with a different setting.

      Thanks for sharing this wonderful hub.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 

      5 weeks ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      I went out and sat on your porch for a bit with a cup of Artichoke tea and had a cat in my lap. Just staring at the chickens as they pranced around. Seemed to me you should be writing another chicken chronicle. Maybe just a poem about them per week.

      Old friend reading glasses struck me as a subject. And being me I thought about funny limericks about love.

      I like the money box poem but I am afraid I like the old box more.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      5 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      I was right there on the porch with you, and loving the visit and the poetry.....challenge for you...."hummingbird"

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Hi Elijah, wow you sure took up my offer to challenge me didn’t you? I’ll see what I can do with your request. As for the second poem...well I would love to be able to live a life without the need for money, but unfortunately I have a mortgage and bills to pay..and sometimes that is a stretch, so now and then cashing in the change is necessary to get by for the fortnight. I will check out your hub “Money Has No Value” however.

    • The0NatureBoy profile image

      Elijah A Alexander Jr 

      5 weeks ago from Washington DC

      Very interesting series, old friend, They all are inspiring and yet I have a "but" about the second one I will not mention so if you want to know you would have to read my "Money Has No Value." LOL

      I don't know what you would call a poem of, in my case, eight line with the 1&8 rhyming, 2&7, 3&6 and 4&5 rhyming I would like to see you do of any topic. Another one I did of 12 lines has the first and last words in each line rhyming, see if you can do one like that on any subject.

      You asked so you get!

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you Pamela. Yes, Spring is a nice time of year here. I appreciate any ideas, those are both possible.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      5 weeks ago from Sunny Florida

      I like the idea of you writing on the porch. Spring in Australia must be wonderful. I will try to give you ideas occasionally. Being a grandparent is near and dear to my heart and I also think your cats are a possible topic.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      I am glad you like this idea, Flourish. Thanks for participating with a suggestion. I wrote a humorous poem recently about losing my keys, but I'll do another about forgetfulness. I am good at forgetting stuff.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Yes, it is a nice, relaxing place to do just that, Lorna. OK, a rhyming poem about the bush it is. Thanks for reading and the suggestion.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 

      5 weeks ago from USA

      I like your poem series idea and these first few. I’ll throw an idea out — a humorous poem about forgetfulness.

    • Lorna Lamon profile image

      Lorna Lamon 

      5 weeks ago

      I imagine your porch is a great place to contemplate and write John. I enjoyed this collection and in particular 'Windows' and how you used the various windows in our lives. As I love nature and Australia is full of the beauty of nature perhaps writing a poem about 'the bush' and its many facets, might be an idea. You are gifted with the ability to write rhyming poems (I'm not), so maybe it could be a rhyming poem.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      Adnan, thank you for such a thoughtful and generous comment. I am glad you enjoyed these poems. Much appreciated.

    • HexAegon profile image

      Adnan 

      5 weeks ago from Earth, Universe

      The way you created the bridge between the windows in our homes and the windows in our house...was remarkable...In such a subtle way...you presented such a beautiful message...we sure are gatekeepers...more like window-keepers to let in what's good and let go ..of what's not...The haiku was so soulful...and through the coin box you depicted how good a storyteller you are...an awesome write...Thank you for Sharing John...!!...And thanks for explaining the difference between porch and verandah...and the non poetic word for that...loved it.. :p...

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