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Poems From the Porch 46

John is a poet and short fiction writer who enjoys collaborating on stories with other writers, and partaking in challenges.

A view  the “she-shed” from the porch

A view the “she-shed” from the porch

Inspiration ~ or Lack Thereof

Firstly, welcome to the porch. I am glad you could join me once again, and I hope this won't be the last of these weekly (mostly) sojourns.

Something that I find concerning lately is that so many of my peers (including some among you) have said they feel they have lost inspiration, or that their muse has abandoned them. This has been a very trying year, to put it mildly, and it is understandable that other things in life are more pressing and take priority over writing. That said, many of us have been spending more time at home, unable to go to work or socialise, and therefore should have more time on our hands.

So, it is probably not a lack of time that is the problem, more like a touch of depression, frustration, and sadness about not being able to visit friends and family. I know that even the recent changes to the HubPages network sites are leading to a lack of motivation for some. If that's the case, shake yourself off, grab a cup of your favourite beverage, turn on some music, grab a notebook and pen, or sit yourself down in front of the computer, and just start writing.

Write about your feelings, what you are going through, how you'll think we manage to get through this pandemic and come out the other side. Or try to think of something cheerful, a scene in nature that makes you happy. Write a poem, even if you aren't a poet..try a haiku, it's only three lines of 5,7,5 syllables, usually relating to nature. give it a go...it doesn't have to be perfect. If you want you can even share it here in the comments.

It doesn't matter what you write, but writing those first few words is a start and often leads to more, as the "flow-on effect" kicks in. I myself have periods of no inspiration and I have to actively find a way to kick start it, but this isn't one of those times. I probably have more ideas swirling in my head than ever before. The hard part is making sense of them and writing them down in some intelligible form.

Anyway, do whatever you need to do to spark that writing desire. I hope this helps to prompt you just a little.

Reading a letter: Image by 愚木混株 Cdd20 from Pixabay

Reading a letter: Image by 愚木混株 Cdd20 from Pixabay

Now we have all gone increasingly digital, what about a poem about the demise of the old-fashioned letter?

— Liz Westwood

The Demise of the Old-fashioned Letter

I remember copybooks at school

when we learned to write “just so.”

Printing was for little kids,

‘cursive writing’ you had to know.


I practised ‘til I got it right,

they said my hand was good.

I’d write so slow and steady,

took as much time as I could.


I won awards for writing,

my penmanship was neat.

I felt pride and accomplishment

that just could not be beat.


Long before the personal computer,

smartphones, or emails,

we wrote hand-written letters

and sent them by snail-mail.


It sometimes took a week or two

To receive a prompt reply.

We’d anxiously await the mail,

No letter made us sigh!


But, if we saw the mailman grin

and reach into his bag,

we’d greet him like a little dog

that had a tail to wag.


By now the letter’s had its day,

email and text are the go.

Communication’s instant,

the old ways were too slow.


Now we type on keyboards,

pen and paper rarely used,

unless you’re a dinosaur like me

who has an old-school muse.


I write my drafts in notebooks

then transfer them to WORD.

Some say that’s just a waste of time,

but it keeps alive what I once learned.


In case I should wake up at night

my notebook’s by my bed

so I can jot down random thoughts

that jump into my head.


How I wish we still wrote letters,

like we did so long ago,

when everything seemed simpler

and life itself moved slow.

Additional Poem at No Extra Cost

I am including an excerpt of this poem because it touches on the same subject as above, and I don't want to be hit with a "duplicate" infringement. if you wish to read the poem in its entirety, just click the link "for more" at the end. It will take you to The Creative Exiles where I have the poem published.

The Dead Letter Office

I often pause to contemplate

Life the way it was.

It seems a different place and time,

We did things “just because.”


Wages were extremely low

But everything was cheap.

The whole world seemed a safer place,

And most people earned their keep.


We used a simple pen and paper

To write letters to our friends.

But everything has changed since then

In our communication trends.


No one had computers then

Except the privileged few.

Email just did not exist,

Tweet was what birds do.


I remember sending letters

To penpals far away,

Sometimes a name or address was wrong

And letters went astray.

(for more)

Boy fishing: Image by Lorri Lang from Pixabay

Boy fishing: Image by Lorri Lang from Pixabay

I've been at my new location for my next contract job for about four weeks. In my free time, I've been doing a lot of fishing. The problem is, I am not catching any fish. You can use this as a metaphor or you can use it literally. Of course you always have the option of emailing to tell me you are stumped. But I know you won't. Please feel free to take as many liberties with this as you need. I realize it is rather vague. By the way, I have caught a nineteen inch catfish, a three inch bluegill (

— Chris Mills

The Art of Fishing ~ Don't Forget the Beer

I’ve often gone a fishing

with my kids down by the pier,

and before that with my own old dad-

an excuse to share a beer.


We’d dig worms from the garden,

sometimes stop and buy some prawns.

Without great bait, you won’t catch fish,

and will be forever scorned.


Make sure you have enough spare hooks,

and sinkers, floats, and lines,

a snack to eat, something to drink,

but most of all - just time.


Patience is an asset,

or so it’s often said.

When fishing you need tonnes of it,

or lots of luck instead.

There’s an art to choosing the best spot

and beating others to it,

casting the line out far enough.

‘cause if you get a snag, you blew it!


You spend all day watching for bites,

untangling snags, replacing hooks,

trying to entertain the kids,

ignoring “I’m bored” looks.


We left home at the crack of dawn,

for that’s when most fish bite,

but we haven’t caught a single one

and now it’s almost night.


My father taught me all he knew,

like be brave and show no fear,

devote time to your family.

But when you’re fishing - take the beer!

Take the beer! Image by Preben Gammelmark from Pixabay

Take the beer! Image by Preben Gammelmark from Pixabay

A request: Have you ever had one of those nightmares where the air feels like glue, or gravity just seems to hold you back? Whenever that happens to me, I fly away from whatever it is I'm scared of in a panic. I'd love to see what you can come up with around that sort of nightmare feeling and experience!

— Kyler J Falk

Halloween, nightmare: Image by Thobar BIGS Design from

Halloween, nightmare: Image by Thobar BIGS Design from

The Nightmare

All I see is darkness

as I awaken with a gasp,

the air like glue and clogs my lungs,

and I struggle for breath.

I try to sit up in my bed

but I’m pinned as I lie prone,

a heavy weight pressed upon my chest

I feel my time has come.

In my wild imagination

this nightmare seems so real,

as some spectre tries to end my life

and I can’t resist its call.

Resigned to fate I give up hope,

but gravity concedes its grip,

my throat expels a gurgled cough

and I escape the veil of death.

This happens to me every night,

oh, how I fear to sleep.

For darkness is my nemesis,

from which I may not wake.

More! More! More!

Well, that's it for another week, but before you go can I ask for more suggestions? I only have two left "unwritten" on my list for next week. If I don't get an influx of new prompts I will have to come up with titles for poems myself..Heaven forbid!

Let's see how we go. Even billybuc's Mailbag has weeks that are light-on for questions, so I am sure I will cope one way or the other. But, if you do have an idea please share it in the comments, and I thank you ahead of time. Thanks for reading, and please stay safe.

© 2020 John Hansen

Comments

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 31, 2020:

Thank you, Umesh. Always good of you to visit and comment.

Umesh Chandra Bhatt from Kharghar, Navi Mumbai, India on October 31, 2020:

Good composition. You have presented the transformation from pen to keyboard very nicely.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 26, 2020:

Thanks for visiting the porch Jo. Days are lovely and warm here, with a few afternoon storms. Glad to see you are keeping the art of the written letter alive by writing to your granddaughters. It is a pity they can't read cursive, and even that they aren't teaching that anymore in some schools. Have a great week.

Jo Miller from Tennessee on October 26, 2020:

I've spent more time than usual porch sitting this year, John. But the weather's turned a little chilly for that lately here in Tennessee, so I've come to spend a little virtual time on your porch.

It so happens I just sent a hand written letter to one of my granddaughters this morning. I'm trying to keep that dying art alive. I send these on a regular basis to my four granddaughters. I have to print them, though, because none of them can read cursive easily.

Diana Carol Abrahamson from Somerset West on October 25, 2020:

The boat fishing is good but as you say, a lot depends on the bait as well .

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 25, 2020:

Hi Diana. It is great that my poems make you smile. So true that fishing from a boat is better...mush more chance of a catch that way. Take care.

Diana Carol Abrahamson from Somerset West on October 24, 2020:

Thanks John. Your poems always make me smile. The fishing one brings back memories of fishing a whole day along the southern coast, near Cape Town. We caught kelp, that's all. Fishing from a boat is far more rewarding. Out on the reefs, out in the wide blue yonder :)

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 24, 2020:

Thank you for visiting the porch Li-Jen. I am glad to hear you find it a good place to relax. Yes, letters were much more personal than texting or even email. I miss writing and receiving them.

Thank you for the kind comment, and also the suggestion of "renovations" or "moving house." I have added those to the list. Take care.

Li-Jen Hew on October 24, 2020:

Hi Jodah,

I appreciate your intro about getting back that inspiration to write again.

I'm happy to hear about letters and it makes me want to know about the content of those letters in the old days. Letters are more personal and I'm sure senders were more thoughtful about what to write, as opposed to texting. It would be cool to keep a Dead Letter Office! It adds to the mysteriousness.

I can feel your passion in writing about scary themes too haha. Thoughtful of you to include Kylie's original description "air like glue". I also enjoyed the family themed fishing poem.

You porch series is a place to destress and I would like you to keep it up. I suggest you to write about renovation or moving into a new house. Maybe it will take you down memory lane.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 23, 2020:

Manatita, thank you for reading and also for sharing that wonderful poem. Much appreciated Bro.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 23, 2020:

Thank you for reading and enjoying these poems, Denise. I used to have pen pals and eagerly awaited their replies in the mail. It does take more time to hand write a letter, put it in an envelope, stamp it and seal it, and take it to the post office, but the whole process brings back nostalgic memories. How lazy are we becoming as a society with email and such?

Thank you for the suggestion about what Halloween’s were like in saver times. I will add it too my list. It may not be done before Halloween though unfortunately.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 23, 2020:

Hi Chitrangada. HP say they are still working on restoring comments but due to the other problems with the niche site migration regarding the ads and videos it will take longer than anticipated. It is frustrating, and my Halloween article was changed greatly, but what can we do? Just stay positive and hope things improve soon.

I am glad you enjoyed these poems, you have a great weekend too.

manatita44 from london on October 23, 2020:

Yes, Bro. Both of your poems are similar. There's a kind of sadness that goes with them too, and the third, interestingly enough, still reminds us that times have changed. Timely poetry! Well, let us float with the fish and here's your fish metaphor poem. One of my old ones, but I'm not sure I posted it. I have over 1000 poems:

The Lamentations of The Soul

Listen to the fish, as it laments

Its lack of freedom.

Caught in a net of its own desires,

It longs for the intimacy of marine corals,

For serenity and protection on the ocean’s bed.

Listen to the soft whispering of winds,

As they sing to the meadow of sunflowers.

Yet we who were born with golden wings,

Can only envy, the soaring ascent of eagles.

The Light of the child’s innocence, longs to bring

Joy, to the millennial emptiness of the Heart.

Come! My Beloved, Unfurl Thy sails;

Let the rays of the moon kiss my soul.

Carry my Spirit, to the luminance of the sun,

So as to erase my darkness, from this world of shadows.

-Manatita, The Lantern Carrier. 6th May 2018

~ Awakening The Inner Light ~

Denise McGill from Fresno CA on October 23, 2020:

I truly love these. I think my favorite is the extinction of letters. Such a sad thing. I love getting letters. I have a friend who is trying to keep penpals but even she is so busy lately that it's hard to keep up. Letters have something extra. The human factor. The ink on paper, written in their own hand, licked the envelope with their own spit. Gross but true. As for suggestions, I was thinking about the old Halloweens of the past where I would visit houses carefree. We never had to worry about razor blades, poisoned candy, or hoodlums throwing things at children. How about a poem about the Halloweens as they were where kids could be kids and dressing up was still about the fun and not about the macabre.

Blessings,

Denise

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on October 23, 2020:

Hello John!

Thanks for the motivation in your opening paragraph. I do feel the lack of motivation to write something new, due to the changes in HubPages, and the inability to comment. I have read your article about Halloween, but couldn’t comment, since it has been moved to the niche site. Great article and I enjoyed reading.

Regarding the poems from the porch, all nice poems, but I especially liked the first one. I miss those handwritten letters.

Thanks for sharing another edition of the wonderful series. Have a wonderful weekend.

Chrish Canosa from Manila Philippines on October 22, 2020:

Mom said it's not I agree too, couse I myself sometimes dream about noodles coming to eat me lol

And yes sir John We will! An awesome day to you !!!

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 22, 2020:

Chrish, thank you for reading and for your interesting comment. I guess a lot of us have nightmares about something but I hope yours aren't too bad. Keep exchanging those handwritten letters with your friend. Take care.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 22, 2020:

Thank you Kyler. I am glad I did your "nightmare" request justice. I can only imagine the horrors that are occurring in some parts of the USA and that you have obviously observed. The Outside Looking In sounds like a very good basis for a poem. I will certainly give it a go.

Chrish Canosa from Manila Philippines on October 22, 2020:

Awesome day! :-)

I still prefer hand writing, I still want to receive a message from hand writing thanks to my cutie friend who still do this. the message of the poems speaks the reality, I got nightmares but it's a paper works from school the deadlines their going to eat me and I was running for my life lol

I enjoyed the poems

as always!!

Thanks a bunge and have a great day;-)

Kyler J Falk from Corona, CA on October 22, 2020:

Hey John, thanks for doing my request! It really is a timely piece, because on one hand we have Halloween coming up, and on the other we have viruses, protests, and riots haunting life as we know it. Seeing people beaten, and in some cases murder one another has really taken its toll on many of us, and during these rough times even life itself is seeming like a nightmare. I'd say you captured my request perfectly, and I'm greatly appreciative of your splendid poetry.

Now that I've been given some liberty from these protests and riots I finally have time to get back to reading and writing. I've missed sitting down and enjoying reading or writing a decent piece, but that also leads me to a new request:

Could I get a poem following along the lines of, "The Outside Looking In," that encompasses the feeling of witnessing something outside of one's control, but still desiring to step in on such a matter? I've witnessed so many horrible things in the last month or so, and I feel like all anyone really does is peer through the narrow looking glass, and act on what little information they gather through that small scope.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 21, 2020:

Thank you for your continued support of this series, Brenda. I have got a few new requests to keep it going for awhile. Yes, it is sad how our communication has become so impersonal...SMS text messages in preference to even a voice call, my God!

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on October 21, 2020:

John,

Let's hope it's not the end. I enjoy reading your work.

Times have definitely changed the way we all communicate.

I would relish a letter in the mail or a phone call instead of texts.

It seems so much more of a personal connection.

I personally feel it is sad.

We even share loving moments over texts...good grief Charlie Brown.

The fishing one was cute for Chris, but I loved the one for Kyler...nightmare.

Keep it going.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 21, 2020:

Thank you, as always, for your generous comment, MsDora.

Dora Weithers from The Caribbean on October 21, 2020:

I'm all for the old-fashioned letter and your poem makes me proud to be.Thanks also for exceptional (as usual) presentations on fishing and nightmares.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 20, 2020:

Hello Rasma. Yes, we have unused boxes of stationary still. I am glad this brought back memories. Thank you for reading.

Gypsy Rose Lee from Daytona Beach, Florida on October 20, 2020:

I enjoyed them all. Thanks for the memories of all the boxes of stationery I purchased to write letters when there was no email. I hope you're having an inspirational new week,

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 20, 2020:

Thank you Flourish. Yes, we also keep a few old letters in a tin in among old photo albums and things which we can never get rid of.

FlourishAnyway from USA on October 20, 2020:

I especially liked the poem about the old fashioned letter. Many of the most meaningful and memorable ones, I still keep even now decades later.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 19, 2020:

Thank you for reading MizB, and especially for checking out the rest of Dead Letter Office on the Creative Exiles. I am glad you and your aunt still exchange letters. We still write out a few Christmas cards but usually for people we can hand them too, most that have to be sent get an e-card sadly. Oh, yes, junk mail..consider it done.

Doris James MizBejabbers from Beautiful South on October 19, 2020:

I loved your poem on the Demise of the Old-Fashioned Letter, and I did click on Creative Exiles and read it to the end. It hit home. Every now and then my aunt and I exchange letters although we usually talk on the phone. She's 92, so I guess old habits are hard to break. Other than that, many of my friends still exchange greeting cards on birthdays and Christmas. We look forward to those. My husband still rushes to the mailbox every day like there will be something exciting in it. Junk mail usually. Now that's an idea, John. How about writing a poem about the deluge of junk mail we still receive?

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 19, 2020:

Hi Mary, yes receiving a letter does make your day, especially because it rarely happens anymore. It sure beats getting a bill in the mail.

”El Jefe” okay, I didn’t know what it meant either, but I will surely add it to my list ”The Boss.” thank you for the prompt.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 19, 2020:

Yes, Liz, that was my Call to Pens as you will. Thank you for enjoying this collection. I will certainly write one about the joys and pitfalls of camping. Stay tuned.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 19, 2020:

Linda, many businesses and people privately too are finding new ways and products to manage the change brought on by this pandemic. Not being able to shop has forced you to do things yourself, like make your own greeting cards. I am sure the recipients will appreciate them much more than the mass produced store bought ones. Thank you for your emailed suggestions. They are great.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 19, 2020:

Thanks for visiting Prithviraj. I am so glad you enjoyed the first poem about handwritten letters, and glad you can relate to the sentiment.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 19, 2020:

I am glad you have that one friend who still does not own a computer and so has no choice but to still write you letters Peg. In turn that enables you to do the same. I remember as a teenager belonging to a pen pal club where we wrote letter to friends in other countries. Yes, I used to collect stamps too. My mother actually passed to of her stamp albums down to me and I started from there, and later evolved into coin and bank note collecting. There are some beautiful stamps and I will write a poem about that.

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on October 19, 2020:

John, like you, I enjoyed receiving letters in the past. These days, hardly do letters come as online is the preferred means of contact. I try to send letters to my friends just to surprise them and they are happy to receive them. The other day, we had dinner in a Mexican restaurant called "El Jefe" and my friend asked me what it meant. So I told her, The Boss. Can you please make a funny poem on El Jefe? Thanks.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 19, 2020:

Shauna. Thank you for being a regular visitor to the porch, and for the topic suggestion. ”first laying eyes on my first-born child.” nice one.

Liz Westwood from UK on October 19, 2020:

Your opening words are inspirational. If we were back in the old days, it could be described as 'A Call to Pens', but, on second thoughts maybe it could be titled 'A Call to Keyboards'.

First class poetry as ever. I appreciated your take on letter writing and the bonus poem too on the subject.

Fishing and the nightmare are well-covered too.

How about a poem on camping and all the potential things that can go wrong? The heated discussions my parents used to have whilst setting up camp were a source of great embarrassment to me as a child. I once witnessed someone paddling a canoe through their tent after a summer deluge.

Linda Lum from Washington State, USA on October 19, 2020:

John, your poems about the loss of letter writing really touched me. We need that connection perhaps even more now because of the isolation. I don't shop so am not able to buy greeting cards for family and friends. So, I've started making my own cards--not as pretty of course, but so far they've been well received. It feels good to do something to make someone happy.

I've sent you an email with a couple of poem suggestions. Have a great week.

Prithviraj Shirole from India on October 19, 2020:

I enjoyed reading all the poems. I loved the first poem the most. Reading handwritten letters is bliss. Thank you so much for sharing the poems.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on October 19, 2020:

I well remember those days of writing letters and waiting to receive them in the mail. Now I have basically one friend who still writes letters, and she does not own a computer by choice. It is always enjoyable when receiving a letter from her. She lives in Germany, so I also love collecting those postage stamps.

If you have not already written a poem about that, collecting postage stamps might make a good subject. I still collect them. My dad started doing that when I was a child. Some countries like Monaco make gorgeous ones!

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on October 19, 2020:

These are all great, John. My favorites are the two about letters and fishing with beer. Fortunately, I've never had a nightmare such as in your last poem. I'd be afraid to go to sleep too!

Here's a suggestion for you: please write a poem about the first time you laid eyes on your firstborn child. As adults, our "firsts" are few and far between. But when we meet our firstborn, that "first" stays with us for a lifetime.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 19, 2020:

Thank you Ankita, I appreciate you visiting and glad you enjoyed these poems.

Ankita B on October 19, 2020:

Wonderful poems. I loved reading the first poem in particular. Brilliant work, as always.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 19, 2020:

Thank you Bill. Predators..that allows a few different directions to be explored.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 19, 2020:

I am glad you found these poems unique, Pamela. It is good you can relate to the letter writing poem, and I like your points about not being able to read historical documents if you can’t read and write cursive. Yep, I have added those suggestions to my list.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 19, 2020:

Well, I guess cursive isn’t for all of us Eric, and I bet you hit a mean key on that Underwood typewriter. Hope you get that letter finished today.

Christmas is certainly different here Down Under in summer. No one horse open sleds here. No white Christmas that’s for sure. Funny we still have most of the same carols and songs though. Though there are a couple “Six White Boomers” and “Santa Never Made it Into Darwin.” You might want to check them out.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 19, 2020:

Ruby, I am happy to hear the “letter” poem made you relate to the letter your sister Bea had kept, that you wrote her, and brought back memories of the two of you going fishing. We can’t control how long depression lasts but as you say, at least reading as a step in the right direction. Hopefully soon you will be able to write again too. I miss your stories and poems.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on October 19, 2020:

Brilliant as always! I have the opposite problem lately. I have too many projects going on, and a very active muse.

We can't have you lacking subject matter....how about a poem about predators?

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on October 19, 2020:

Your poems today were on such uniquely different topics, which make them all the more interesting. I like the one about letter writing as I remember those day. I think everyone should be taught to write in cursive. If you can't read cursive, you cannot read historical documents. I run across this when working with my genealogy documents.

As for a new topic, I hope I am not repeating a recent topic, but the first snow, the joy of having family over to dinner or just watching children laugh while riding bikes and playing. Have a good week, John.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on October 19, 2020:

Wonderful. Nightmares are strange beasts indeed. "Spectre" indeed.

Thanks for the boot, a letter is half written. I will get it out today.

Never did get cursive. So they gave me an Underwood typewriter. Men could not type in those days.

Winter is Winter here. A few weeks away. I mean the Northern hemisphere. How do you ride around in a one horse open sled? You must have different songs in the South.

Ruby Jean Richert from Southern Illinois on October 19, 2020:

John, I love all your poems. The one about writing letters struck a special cord with me, I found an old letter written by me to my sister Bea, why she kept it I'll never know. I was cleaning out her house after she passed away. Needless to say, I will always cherish it because she kept it. Your poem about fishing also brought a happy smile, remembering the times Bea and I would go fishing. She never grew tired or bored, I did, and one time I let all her worms lose so she wouldn't have any more bait, I remember her running after them, trying to catch them as they wiggled away. Oh, the good ole days! I along with many others have been depressed, but at least I'm reading, that's a step up. Keep on doing what you do so well. We all love your poetry.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 19, 2020:

Hi Kalpana, your statement is so true. “We have lost that beautiful longing that comes with waiting.“ The young these days just don’t know what it was like and see it just as an inconvenience when in fact it was a wonderful experience.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 19, 2020:

Hello Lorna, and thank you for the lovely comment. Yes, a fountain pen takes real skill that is for sure. I would be honoured to write a poem titled “All Roads Lead to you.” Have a great day.

Kalpana Iyer from India on October 19, 2020:

Since everything is instant nowadays (coffee, mails, social media, dating), we have lost that beautiful longing that comes with waiting.

Lorna Lamon on October 19, 2020:

Thank you for your encouragement John and I agree, with everything that is happening it's easy to fall into a slump. We just have to keep going and take each other with us. I loved all the poems and in particular the 'Old fashioned Letter' which reminded me of using a fountain pen in school and that permanent mark on your finger. It is definitely a skill which I need to improve on.

I feel you are a romantic at heart John and perhaps a poem about 'All roads lead to you' would be nice. Yet another enjoyable interlude enjoyed over a cup of tea and a muffin - until next time my friend.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 19, 2020:

Thank you Niks. I'll try.

Niks from India on October 19, 2020:

Undoubtedly, you are great at playing with the words and coming up with the heart-touching poems. Keep going, John.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 18, 2020:

Lora, I am glad you are like me and also miss the hand-written letter and the use of cursive writing in general. I admit my hand-writing has suffered in recent years because I am always rushing to get things down. I was always so particular. If I deliberately take my time I can still write neatly, but I have to make the effort. I always did when writing letters.

Thank you for reading and for the generous comment. I am glad you enjoyed "Nightmare" also.

Lora Hollings on October 18, 2020:

What great poems from the porch this week to remind so many of us what we're missing now! Like you John, I miss the old days when people actually wrote hand-written letters and we would wait in eager anticipation for a reply letter. I have a whole drawer full of letters that my mother wrote to me in her beautiful cursive writing. And how I would enjoy writing and sending letters back to her. I remember learning cursive writing in second grade and it really gave you an elated feeling when you could write as beautifully as the template you were following. We would have writing competitions and it was always so much fun! I also write my original ideas or drafts in cursive before I transfer them to Word. Like you, I keep a notebook on my night stand to jot down ideas. I just prefer the old ways, I guess! So naturally, my favorite poem is "The Demise of the Old-fashioned Letter." And I will have to read "The Dead Letter Office" in it's entirety. But, I sure loved what I read so far! The Nightmare is a ghoulish treat especially for this time of the year. A terrific collection!

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on October 18, 2020:

Thank you for such a kind comment. and for being the first to read this collection, Rosina. I am glad you enjoyed them.

Rosina S Khan on October 18, 2020:

All these poems touch the heart and soul. You never fail to disappoint. My fave in this collection is the first poem, "The Demise of the Old-fashioned Letter". A marvelous share.