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Poems From the Porch 48

John is a freelance writer, ghost-writer, storyteller, and poet. He always tries to include a message or social commentary in his writing

Surprise Creek, Northern Territory

Surprise Creek, Northern Territory

What Lies Ahead?

We all have to embrace change. I know that, and accept it. After all, if nothing ever changed things would stagnate, and there would be no progress. In saying that, I don’t think change should be instigated unless there are very good reasons and those arguments for change being necessary are clearly set out and transparent.

During my childhood we moved quite a few times, well only three to be exact, but for me that was too many. I know it was due to my dad’s job and him being required to relocate for promotion, but it seemed I was being uprooted from my school and friends after I had just become settled. Anyway, I am not a fan of unnecessary change or “change for change’s sake.” I need a damn good reason, and I adhere to the phrase, “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it.”

As we are all only too aware, at the present time this site is undergoing major change. lt is now part of the Maven conglomerate, and the way things are moving, HubPages as we know it (knew it) may never be the same. I hate being a nay-sayer and I hope I am proven wrong in regard to the success and continuation of HubPages as an entity, but it doesn’t look good.

We are still waiting with baited-breath for comments to be enabled on the new Maven style niche sites. Every time that question is asked we are told it will happen but there are other more urgent priorities, and we can’t be given a timeline.

This has been my long winded explanation of why this collection is a couple of weeks late being published. Thank you for being patient and still taking the time to visit the porch.

Over the years HubPages has done a great job and been very resilient when other so called “content mill” sites have floundered and collapsed. So, I applaud the management for having the foresight and courage to be innovative and make changes necessary to keep the site alive. For instance, the original niche site concept was a great idea and seemed to be successful. I remain to be convinced that will prove the case with the Maven takeover.

There has been a lot of discussion in the forums, but even more in articles and via email, voicing people’s concerns. In fact, it seems many of us are reaching out via email to ensure the community stays intact, even if comments are not restored. So that we can still give and receive feedback on each other’s articles. This isn’t ideal, but people are resilient and do what they have to in the face of adversity.

All this is a roundabout way of saying I don’t know what will happen to this series ’Poems From the Porch.’ It relies on readers comments and the prompts for new poems to be written. If it is moved to ‘Discover’ as soon as it is approved it doesn’t leave a very wide window open for people to read, comment, and leave suggestions for future poems. So, that makes me wonder, is the series worth continuing?

I suppose readers can always email me their suggested poetry prompts, at least until comments are back..(that will happen one day, won’t it?) Anyway, I have enough requests for about repairs more anthologies. I guess I will at least use those in the meantime and cross my fingers for the future.

This has been my long winded explanation of why this collection is a couple of weeks late being published. Thank you for being patient and still taking the time to visit the porch.

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.

— Pamela Oglesby

Image by Luidmila Kot from Pixabay

Image by Luidmila Kot from Pixabay

The First Snow

The first snow is just a dusting

like icing sugar on a cake.

It often sneaks up silently

when we are not awake.

Scroll to Continue

We are greeted by the morning,

and everything looks white.

Jack Frost did his magic

some time throughout the night.

The snow brings us together

as cold days now are here.

Snowball fights and snowmen -

let’s have some winter cheer.

Families start preparing

for their Thanksgiving feast,

then soon after is our saviour’s birth,

and a white Christmas none the least.

Thanksgiving: Image by Gordon Johnson from Pixabay

Thanksgiving: Image by Gordon Johnson from Pixabay

The dinner table is the center for the teaching and practicing not just of table manners but of conversation, consideration, tolerance, family feeling, and just about all the other accomplishments of polite society except the minuet.

— Judith Martin

Having Family Over For Dinner

Clean the house, we must impress,

best cutlery and plates.

They’ll arrive in just a little while,

don’t leave the prep too late.

They may not judge, they’re family,

but that matters not a lot.

Some effort is important

so let’s give it a good shot.

When they arrive we can relax,

all stress is cast aside,

for when family comes together

it negates all class divide.

Hugs and kisses pass around,

”It’s good to have you home.

We haven’t caught up for awhile,

just Face-time or by phone.”

We catch up on the latest news,

then our history’s recalled.

Memories of growing up

that were shared by one and all.

Grandchildren running to and fro,

family traditions will embrace.

When they have children of their own

So these memories won’t erase.

Watching Kids Ride Bikes

I love to watch the kids ride bikes,

it brings back memories

of when I was a kid back then

and growing up seemed ’free.’

Once we progressed from trainer wheels

to riding on our own,

our balance now perfected

we could cycle on the road.

Our friends and siblings joined us

as we explored the neighbourhood,

riding streets we didn’t know.

Those times just seemed so good.

Kids still love to ride their bikes,

but the world’s a different place.

It’s not as safe as it once was,

we can’t give too much grace.

Now we watch their every move,

don’t let them out of sight.

There’re dangers around the corner

so be inside long before night.

We can’t go back to like it was

and childhood is different now.

So, watch your children ride their bikes

and be content to show them how.

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

— Bill Holland


Predators prey on the weak

and those who aren’t aware,

so every time you venture out

make sure that you take care.

Be aware of those around you,

don’t stroll at night alone,

because the dark holds dangers.

It’s when predators may roam.

Predators stalk stealthily,

they’re very rarely seen.

At least, that is, until too late,

like a monster in a dream.

They strike without a warning,

when they think the coast is clear.

Doing their most evil deeds,

instilling pain and fear.

So, never be complacent,

make sure you have a plan.

Turn defence into attack

in whatever way you can.

Experience demands that man is the only animal which devours his own kind, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor.

— Thomas Jefferson

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 John Hansen


John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 21, 2020:

Thank you, Jo. I doubt that I’ll be leaving here unless things keep worsening. At the moment there are ways around most commenting..even if it is a little difficult.

Jo Miller from Tennessee on November 21, 2020:

I do hope you continue with your poetry here. I'm just now learning how to submit comments with the new setup.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 20, 2020:

Thank you for your generous comment, Lora. I wanted to try to relive some childhood memories as well as compare things from the 50s and 60s til now.

I certainly hope we have learned valuable lessons from the present situation.

Lora Hollings on November 20, 2020:

These poems are wonderful, John. They are filled with the magic of being a child, the beauty of the seasons and traditions yet they also remind us of a world that has changed much compared to what it was like growing up in the fifties and sixties. The world was a safer place back then and we didn’t have to think about a pandemic. Hopefully, if we’re patient and careful, there will be a light at the end of the tunnel, soon. And perhaps, we will all learn to appreciate life much more!

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 19, 2020:

Liz, yes like I said to Shauna, these comments are tricky. Thanks for supporting the continuation of this series and the suggestion for a poem. I will add that one. Stay safe.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 19, 2020:

It is never too late Shauna, and I know how difficult it is trying to comment through the feed notifications. Yes, at least we have that but for some reason I don’t get notification for articles by some people..Billy us, or Eric Dierker for instance. I get email notifications but never on my feed for some reason. So if I am too late, the only way I can comment is by emailing them.

Liz Westwood from UK on November 19, 2020:

I made it at last. These comments are certainly proving a challenge! I am in agreement with the points you make. Long may your Poems from the Porch continue. This set was well worth the wait. I enjoyed them all. How about a poem about what a COVID-safe Christmas might look like?

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

Hey, John! So sorry I'm late. I've been crazy busy at work. I had to dig deep into my feed to find this comment thread, but here I am.

As far as HP, we'll just have to wait and see and believe what we're being told. No use stressing over it.

I loved all your poems. I think Jefferson's quote really hit the nail on the head. Sad, but true.

Have a great weekend, John. I'm playing catch up right now. It takes a lot more time when you have to come in thru the back door to comment, but at least we have that, right?

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 19, 2020:

Thank you, Devika. I like it when my poetry makes the reader ponder. Have a great day.

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on November 19, 2020:

Hi Jodah such poetry is amazing and give us a lot t ponder on from it.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 18, 2020:

Hi Linda. I am glad that we can still comment through the feed too. Yes, it is better to try to concentrate on happy events at the present time.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on November 18, 2020:

I'm glad I found this article in my feed so that I could comment on it. I especially like your poems about the festivities that are approaching. It's lovely to think about happy events during the current situation in the world.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 17, 2020:

Hello Mary, I am glad you enjoyed these poems, and the snowflakes yesterday. That sure must add ambience to the Christmas season.

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on November 17, 2020:

Just wonderful poems. Yesterday, there were snowflakes as we went about shopping for Christmas gifts outside of the city, where the Covid cases are minimal. The snowflakes added charm to the experience.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 16, 2020:

Thanks Diana. Yes, there is a sense of freedom when you first learn to ride a bicycle on your own. Glad you could relate to these.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 16, 2020:

Hello Denise, I am pleased when I hear that the reader can feel or sense the situation described. It is sad when we can’t spend time with our nearest and dearest. I will certainly write about that.

Diana Carol Abrahamson from Somerset West on November 16, 2020:

Love the bicycle poem and the poetry around the family dinner, where friends and nearest and dearest gather. I had many a spill learning to ride a bike, on dirt roads and tracks. You are so right, there is such a feeling of freedom on a bicycle with the rush of air through your hair.

Denise McGill from Fresno CA on November 16, 2020:

Oh, the one about the Preditors really grabbed me. But I love them all. I could feel the frosty snow and felt greeted by family for the holidays. You have a gift, my friend. My husband and I have decided not to go be with the grandkids this year only because of the pandemic. Have you a poem about the sadness of not being able to get to hug our loved ones at a time like this?



John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 16, 2020:

I am happy that you enjoyed the poems I wrote from your suggestions, Pamela. Yes, we can be grateful that there is still a way to comment through the feed but hopefully full-functionality will be returned one day. Thank you.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 16, 2020:

Hi Rinita, yes at least we can still comment via the feed. Unfortunately they take a while to show up on the article on Discover. But it is better than nothing.

Yes, I feel you are right, I do need to write on some darker subjects now and then. I actually think they are among my best work too. I will add your suggestion, and thank you for the encouragement to keep going.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 16, 2020:

Peggy, I got notifications of comments but when you click on the email and it takes you to the article on Discover there are no new ones there. I had to click “comments” on my Accounts page, to find them. It is a round about way. I am glad you enjoyed and want me to keep the series going.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 16, 2020:

Thank you for going to the trouble of looking for this on the feed, Bill. While there’s a will there is a way, or vice versa. Glad thes poems set your day off right.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on November 16, 2020:

i particularly liked the poems you wrote on my suggested topics. Each one was a treat, John. The one about the children gave me a smile as it made me think about the laughter you hear when children are out on their bikes. I am glad there is still a way to comment after the article is moved as I had to go to the dentist this morning.

I think we all feel the frustration that you expressed, but I felt better yesterday when I learned you could comment after the article is moved. Thanks for another wonderful group of poems, John.

Rinita Sen on November 16, 2020:

Like everyone else, I'm commenting from the feed. Please HP don't take this away from us at least. All poems are beautiful, but I feel it's time for you to write about something dark again. You do real justice to negative feelings, they do touch every string of the heart. So how about a poem on lack of inclusivity in every strata of the society? I'll leave details to you, but something about how the excluded person feels might be good. Oh and I hope you still keep the series going. I'm sure readers will email you their suggestions if commenting stops here altogether.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on November 16, 2020:

Rosina taught me that we could still make comments by reading the article first, and then opening the HubPages feed and scrolling down the page to then leave a comment. It takes longer, but your poetry is always worth reading. I loved the snow, bike riding, and the predator one was a cautionary tale. Please keep writing this series!

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on November 16, 2020:

I had to find this on the feed to comment, but at least I'm able to do so that way. As always, brilliant! Thanks for starting my day off on the right foot, my friend.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 16, 2020:

Charlie, I love that little ditty. Damn predators strike too quickly. Thanks for reading and managing to comment.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 16, 2020:

Yes, and have a happy birthday no matter what

Charlie Halliday from Scotland on November 16, 2020:

Another enjoyable visit to the porch.

I wasn't on there quick enough

or had time to recover.

The predator had got you

and moved you to discover. :)

Chrish Canosa from Manila Philippines on November 16, 2020:

Oh Yas po! Fighting :-)

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 16, 2020:

Thank you Chrish. I am glad you could relate to all these. Sorry about the hard trials in the Philippines now...but try to have a great Christmas.

Chrish Canosa from Manila Philippines on November 16, 2020:

Awesome day Sir John:-)

I can relate every lines of these poems, I dunno what will happen on Christmas(it's my birthday I'm going to cry probably)during hard trials in the Philippines right now but still no matter what, Christmas day will happen wether the city where I'm in submerged right now.:'( Ooof that predators!

Thanks for delivering us an awesome poetry as always ;-)

Have an awesome time you all out there;-)

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 16, 2020:

Thank you for the wonderful comment, Chitrangada. I am glad the family gathering poems were relatable to you, and I greatly appreciate your sentiments for this series to continue.

It is also good that you were still able to comment, and we will certainly keep connected in one way or another.

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on November 16, 2020:

Lovely to see this edition of 'Poems from the porch.' I wish this continues forever--.

The beauty and the sentiments of the first snow is well picturised in your poem.

It's family gathering times in India, due to the festival season and your poem is so beautiful and relatable to me. Loved all of them.

Absolutely agree with your opening paragraph and agree with Kalpana. If everything is going well, why constantly keep on changing. Anyway, happy to read and comment on this. I am sure, we will keep connected, somehow.

Thank you for sharing.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 16, 2020:

Thank you, Ann.

Ann Carr from SW England on November 16, 2020:

You got the 'icing sugar' spot on and the 'creeping up' - perfect!


John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 16, 2020:

Hello, Flourish. Glad you enjoyed the Predator poem, and yes they say comments will be returned...but can’t say when.

FlourishAnyway from USA on November 16, 2020:

I especially liked the predator poem. Seemed appropriate for more than just animal predators!

Those comments supposedly are coming back.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 16, 2020:

Kalpana, thank you for echoing my thoughts about not changing just for change’s sake. I appreciate your comment.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 16, 2020:

Hi Ann, thank you for reading. I hoped the First Snow poem was okay, as I have never actually experienced it.

So far there are ways to comment, as you say by using the notifications in your feed, but that doesn’t last long.

Kalpana Iyer from India on November 16, 2020:

I totally agree with you when you say you don't like change for change's sake. I am pretty much the same. If you are unhappy with a situation, change it. But I don't understand the need for constant change when everything is fine as it is.

Ann Carr from SW England on November 16, 2020:

Great poems, as always, John. I love the 'snow' one especially.

Still trying to work out the way round comments - apparently the feed is the best way but I can't always make it work!


John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 16, 2020:

Hi Millicent. I am glad you were early enough to catch this before it is moved. I like how you put it

“being locked out.”

I am happy that you enjoy reading my poems, and it would be a great Christmas present if comments are restored here by then. Let us hope and pray that we can all come together to celebrate it.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 16, 2020:

Thank you for your kind comment, Rosina. I am glad you particularly enjoyed Pamela’s poems. Of course I will put a poem about Virgos on my list.

Millicent Okello from Nairobi, Kenya on November 16, 2020:

The Christmas spirit is around the corner. I wonder if the beautiful community in Hubpages will always be there when we come together as one and celebrate the beauty of our family members and friends. It's so unfortunate that all this may turn into memories. How I enjoy reading your articles and the beautiful community of loving people and watch the children play-nostalgic.It's sad that the community is nolonger safe.for the children have to play being watched for there is danger around the corner. I make my comment while I fear being locked out for being late as i write.

Thanks John for sharing this article poems from the porch.

Rosina S Khan on November 16, 2020:

John, I am super excited to find Poems from the Porch once again. I am a homely and family girl so that naturally I loved reading the poems requested by Pamela: "Having Family Over For Dinner" and "Watching Kids Ride Bikes" in today's lovely collection of poems.

By the way, I am a Virgo in my forties born on 5th September. I would like to request a poem: "What's So Special About Virgos?"

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on November 16, 2020:

Thank you Manatita. I appreciate your comment, and yes, I was also sad to read that will be the last of Linda’s series. I wish you a wonderful Christmas also.

manatita44 from london on November 15, 2020:


A very lovely christmas feel to the whole piece, even if you've got predator's in there. Great to be aware especially now.

I read Linda L's piece with sadness. It's hardly up and already on a niche site. The powers that be are stalling in their answers to you as they test the waters.

In other words, if this works, then bye bye comments

Sad but true. Have a great Christmas!

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