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Sittin’ On The Porch

By Tom Poland

web posted April 8, 2016
tom
                                                          poland sittin
                                                          on the porchLIFE DOWN SOUTH-- Seldom see folks summer porch sitting, lest you be in the country. Air conditioning’s citified too many folks; can’t bear up under the heat.

Times were, families gathered on the porch to talk as children sallied forth with mayonnaise jars in quest of fireflies. Over yonder on the horizon, heat lighting
bathed the evening with luminescence. Silence. No thunder, but afar bolts split the sky asunder.

Folks rocked.

Now rockers sit empty.

A honeysuckle-sweet breeze stirs, and the chairs rock once again. The ghosts of porch sitters have come to reclaim their place and the chairs creak; worn floorboards creak. Altogether, it’s a pleasant sound.

The South owns a fine, front porch heritage. Our porches long were windows to the outside world and a conveyance to family legends. Willie Morris understood.

“You were sitting out on the porch and they would tell you these stories, wonderfully vivid idiom. What they were really doing was giving us a way to see. The stories from the past — especially from my grandmother, made me feel that the past and the present are so intimately woven together.”

What ruined this fabric? Air conditioning, attached garages, and outsiders. ‘Twas charming and relaxing but on the way out






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