June Observation

          appeared in Misnomer, autumn 1992


 
The man who built the house
must have loved
his nights on the porch,
must have found a tune
or story worth following
in subtle night sounds
of whippoorwills, crickets
and scrape of
wood chair on concrete.
 
He put porch on four sides,
so whether wind or rain blew
off the hill to the west
or from the river
a hundred yards south,
he could sit
warm and dry
somewhere
on his four-part-porch.
 
He surely must have loved his nights.

I knew this house, and the old man who both built and lived in it, when I was a kid.  Sometimes I suspect porches were invented in Appalachia.  If nothing else, the appreciation of them has been sharpened to an art form.



 
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