Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Slice of Life: #52Stories, 3/52: Porches

A porch is such a simple word
to contain so many memories.

A little girl standing in her Sunday best 
on a Tulsa porch just barely remembered.
Playing jacks with Dortha on hot summer days,
cool concrete caressing our sweaty legs.
Carol and I sitting on the porch steps, 
savoring bowls of homemade banana ice cream,
listening to the shenanigans
of Dad and Uncle Alvin telling story after story. 
Our first home, our firstborn, Blake, and 
Grandma and Grandpa Behnke
swinging in the porch swing,  
getting acquainted with their new grandson.
A blessed afternoon on the porch 
when Lance rolled our new video camera,
Mom telling the story 
of receiving the letter notifying her
that Dad (missing-in-action during WWII) 
was alive. 
Backdrop to Mom's story is Blake's 
calling-down-the-pipe tunes and needing the 
occasional comfort of his mother's lap .
An afternoon spent on Crystal's porch, 
cousins playing in the yard,
on the swing set, and in the sandbox.
Sara carrying as many kittens
as her arms will hold.
Jack and Grandma watching raindrops fall 
from the front porch,
darting in and out of the gentle Seattle rain, 
laughing and smiling with each encounter.
We need more porches.
We need more time
for sitting and listening,
for making memories,
and remembering.


  1. We had a porch swing when I was in elementary school, and I’ve missed it since we moved in seventh grade. I often tell my husband that houses where we live have narrow entryways to deter people from visiting. Few have porches and even fewer have porch swings. I agree w/ your closing remarks in this story and see the way the porch invites neighborliness in the story. Is it a true memory or fictional?

    1. I'm the little girl on the porch in her Sunday best and the Grandma darting in and out of the Seattle rain.

  2. Ramona, this post is as refreshing as a morning spent swinging on a porch. I've never had a home with a porch but it's something I've always wanted. I've read some fascinating things about the high, hidden costs of AC--among them, the loss of porches and porch time. I love your sweet memories and those final lines.

  3. Porch sitting in my parents' former home was a favorite time. My kids wanted to have a porch party last summer as we were cleaning out the house. Bittersweet. As are your memories, so close to the heart.

  4. Oh I love this - we have a back deck but it is not the same as a front porch. I go out on summer nights and sit on the steps to watch the sun set and chat with the neighbors. Thanks for this post.

  5. Fully agreeing with your call for more porches. And if porches are not available, we can certainly create/find/make more time for being together and listening.

  6. An ode to the front porch... so wonderful

  7. Porches bring back wonderful memories. My Nonnie had a big porch that had a clothing line from it to the big tree in the yard. We worked and talked there. Maybe that porch was the start of my love of porches. I use my porch now as one of my decorating spots. Your photo brought back wonderful memories. May it continue to allow you to develop your poetic thoughts, Ramona.

  8. Oh, how I love this trip down memory lane! I have always wanted a large porch on a house, but have to settle for a little patio to retire to and watch the world go by, when weather and time permit. Thanks for sharing these small but memorable moments with us!