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Poems From the Porch 50

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

The 50th Edition of Poems From the Porch!

Well, what can I say? This article brings up the milestone of fifty anthologies in the series, and around 170 poems prompted or suggested by you all, my friends and readers. A big thank you to everyone who has made a request or many over this time, and to anyone else who follows and reads these.

I began this series about 15 months ago and it is a testimony that it is still going strong and I don't look like running out of suggested poems yet. Many of you may have thought I had discontinued the series because this edition has been three weeks in coming, but here it is, and better late than never. Life and work got in the way a bit.

Pull up a chair and enjoy this week's poems.

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.

— Mary Norton

El Jefe (The Boss): Image by Social Butterfly from Pixabay

El Jefe (The Boss): Image by Social Butterfly from Pixabay

"El Jefe" ~ The Boss

They call me “El Jefe”

I’m the Boss or the Chief,

So you come straight to me

With your gripe or your grief.

I’ll sort it out quick

Or I’ll give you short-shift.

I don’t have the time

To get stressed or miffed.

My job is important,

I’m the head of this joint,

And I’m quite short on patience

Scroll to Continue

So get to the point.

If you want something done

Go straight to the top.

I can restore comments

If that’s what you want.

Despite what you’ve heard

Or probably read,

Comments on niche sites

Aren’t better off dead.

I like the old ways,

This joint used to buzz.

These days it’s just like

A bee without fuzz.

So, I’ll bring comments back,

It is easy to do.

I’ll just click my fingers,

Here we

I’ll just change the layout

And reprogram them in.

We made a mistake,

Please forgive us our sins.

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?

— Doris James MizBejabbers

No Junk Mail: Image by cattu from Pixabay

No Junk Mail: Image by cattu from Pixabay

A Deluge of Junk Mail (Deliverer's Perspective)

You said you love mail,

So make up your mind.

You are rather picky

To want certain kinds.

We fill up your mailbox

What more can you ask?

At least it’s not bills,

So don’t take us to task.

You may call it ‘junk mail’

But they’re ‘sales catalogs.’

Some like them some don’t,

It’s like cats versus dogs.

Almost no one writes letters,

That’s all passed us by,

So what’re a few leaflets

Between you and I?

They keep you informed

About products you need,

And many you don’t

But you just have to see.

We’re paid to deliver

To every mailbox,

So a sign “NO JUNK MAIL”

Just makes us feel cross.

Please don’t reject it,

What harm can it do?

You don’t have to read it

If it’s not for you.

It has many uses

You need to consider,

Like shredding it up

To make kitty litter.

Or when you are painting

Spread it ‘round the walls,

So paint doesn’t drip

down onto the floor.

So, please don’t see junk mail

As personal abuse.

Think outside the box

And put it to use.

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.

— Kyler J Falk

Outside Looking In: Image by thewet nonthachai from Pixabay

Outside Looking In: Image by thewet nonthachai from Pixabay

On the Outside Looking In

On the outside looking in,

God release me from all sin.

I know it’s out of my control,

But, “Do what’s right!” I have been told.

Report the wrongs you cannot fix,

Don’t jump in with stones and sticks.

That always makes things worse,

Negotiation’s needed first.

But, I can’t ignore what’s clearly wrong,

That betrays beliefs that I hold strong.

Keep my head but make a call,

For my peace I must stand tall.

This conundrum one must face,

No matter what your creed or race.

Our moral compass is our guide,

Don’t try to bow your head and hide.

Some are scared of ridicule,

Or of being called a fool.

Let the hero in you out,

Let your truth erase all doubt.

Your 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.

— Li-Jen Hew

Goods and Shackles: Image by Manfred Richter from Pixabay

Goods and Shackles: Image by Manfred Richter from Pixabay

Moving House

“We’re moving house” - those scary words

I’m always loathed to hear.

Just the thought of packing up

Fills my poor soul with fear.

All those goods and shackles

We’ve collected over time,

Must be packed and moved again,

There’s no reason and no rhyme.

It’s one way of clearing clutter,

Tossing out what’s of no use.

Allowing us to start afresh,

And escape the hoarding noose.

Once everything is packed to go

It’s time to clean the house.

To me the worst job of the lot

And to which I don’t espouse.

Removal truck or trailer loads

To move from old to new,

And then it all begins again,

Each time I say, “I’m through.”

To set things up the way you want

In a new house can be fun.

At least the move is over

And a new chapter’s begun.

I think you take a little part

Of every place you’ve been

And add it to your present home.

Or, to me, that’s how it seems.

Likewise, you leave a part of you

in all your past locales,

Which lingers on for decades

Like bread baked in oven smells.

So turn each house into a home

No matter where you live.

Treat it well and treasure it,

Then back to you, it will give.

Casy Home: Image by Annie Spratt from Pixabay

Casy Home: Image by Annie Spratt from Pixabay

© 2020 John Hansen


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

Hi Mr Happy, thank you for reading and your congratulations. Yes, While I was researching “El Jefe” I found out it was one of Fidel Castro’s nicknames. I think I had heard that before...but who knows lol. You have a great weekend also.

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

Hello Anita, thank you for the lovely comment and congratulations. I don’t intend to stop writing the series anytime soon. Take care.

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

Linda, thank you for acknowledging this milestone. The first 50 went quickly so fingers crossed the series keeps going to 100. Glad you liked the pictures, and that El Jefe was your favourite too.

I have moved a lot too, and at our last house it was about a mile to the mailbox so it was a good excuse to get some daily exercise. I put on weight here in town since I moved ..darn it!

I sure hope comments are restored soon. Have a very Merry Christmas.

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

Denise, you comment made me smile. If what I write makes someone actually laugh, I can’t ask for more. Thanks for reading, and putting pressure on HP’s El Jefe.

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

Thank you for the congratulations, Rosina. I don’t envy you having to move especially at this time of the year. My son and his family have to move soon as well but are still looking for another house.

I hope your move goes smoothly and take care.

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

Manatita, thank you for your generous comment as always. I am glad you liked those pictures as well. No, I don’t recall getting a card from you. “Bounced” you say? That is strange as I have received emails fine from you before. Merry Christmas to you.

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

Thank you Peg. We just have to keep pressuring the powers that be to reinstate those comments or they will think our concerns have blown over. Maybe there is an El Jefe listening. Happy Hollidays.

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

Good to see you back Ruby. Firstly, all the best to your granddaughter Lisa in her recovery. We all appreciate what she does. Yes, we put a part of ourselves in every house we live in, so make them all special to us while we are there.

I will put the COVID recovery poem on my list.

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

Hello Shauna, yes it’s hard to believe the series has been going that long but then other things that I would swear happened only three or four years ago I read wet actually 10 or 12, so I am constantly surprise by how fast time goes.

Let’s appoint El Jefe In charge of HP or Maven and see what happens. I wish. Once upon a time I used to deliver junk mail myself, so I know how little that pays. Anyone that knocks it back is a few cents you don’t get, so I gave it the sympathetic treatment. Glad this brightened your day. Have a great Christmas.

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

Hi Bill, I have a long way to go to match your Mailbag’s in number but I think 50 is a good milestone for what started out just as an experiment.

Thanks for your continued support, and you have a Happy Holliday as well.

Mr. Happy from Toronto, Canada on December 18, 2020:

Very creative! And You certainly have your way with words.

Congratulations on your 50th!

Did You know, "El Jefe" was also one of Fidel Castro's nick-names? Fun facts (for me anyway lol).

You have yourself a joyful weekend - cheers!

Ankita B on December 18, 2020:

Congratulations on the 50th. All the poems were wonderful and I especially loved El Jefe and the Junk Mail. Such a creative series. It is always great to read your poems.

Linda Lum from Washington State, USA on December 18, 2020:

John congratulations on this milestone. It might have taken a few weeks but was well worth waiting for. The pictures you selected are wonderful! Of course "El Jefe" is my favorite (HP, are you listening?).

Moving. I've done it far too many times. I've told my kids that the next one they're in charge (moving me into the retirement home).

I still get excited when the mail is delivered (and now it's probably because it gives me an excuse to get out of the house. Our mailbox is at the end of our dirt road).

I'm so glad that you have continued this series. Hopefully long before you pen #100 the comments will be restored.

Best wishes to you and your family for a Merry Christmas.

Denise McGill from Fresno CA on December 18, 2020:

You made me laugh out loud with the Junk mail and the El Jefe! You are a genius. What a way with words. And what a great perspective. So El Jefe, get right on those changes! Haha.



Rinita Sen on December 18, 2020:

Congratulations on the 50th. Here's to many more. The last poem totally spoke to me. I'm in the middle of moving right now. Throwing things that we've accumulated over years. Part of me still wishes I didn't have to go. But the situation calls for it (thank you pandemic).

All were excellent. The first one, what can I say? I hope the bosses here read it lol. Stay well John.

manatita44 from london on December 18, 2020:

John, your first two pictures are amazing! The first for beauty, aestheticism, sublimity and grandeur. The second is so real, that it's scary in a light-hearted sense. You have portrayed 'El Jefe' so well!

Those first two poems are excellent also. Your take on junk mail is reassuringly positive and meaningful, as well as using the 'boss' to clear up the Hubpages challenges. Brilliant!! Did you get a card from me? I think your mail 'bounced.' Merry Christmas!!

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on December 18, 2020:

Congratulations on this milestone! Yes! Yes! Yes! Let's bring back comments as they once were! I liked all of your poetic efforts this time. Your talents are boundless!

Ruby Jean Richert from Southern Illinois on December 18, 2020:

I think my favorite one this time is moving from one house to another. I have done that and I have fond memories of every house. I really never thought about it until I read your poem. You are so gifted. Keep the poems coming. How about one about recovery from Covid, my Granddaughter Lisa, who is a RN is recovering. I wish I could comment on your page. BUMMER...

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

Yes, Shauna, it is hard to believe the series has been going that long. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on the others.

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on December 18, 2020:

My how time flies, John! Fifteen months for this series? Goodness, where does the time go?

My favorite this installment is "El Jefe". If he were the HP/Maven boss, we'd have gotten what we asked for long ago. In fact, he wouldn't have removed comments at all!

And I love your take on junk mail. Be creative and put it to good use, indeed!

Thanks for brightening my day, John!

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on December 18, 2020:

50th? Congratulations on that milestone! Brilliant writing as always, very creative, very entertaining. Always a pleasure, my friend.

Happy Holidays to you!

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

I am happy that you especially enjoyed "El Jefe," Mary, and that you and your friend got a laugh from it. Thank you for the congratulations of the 50th edition.

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

Hi Chrish, I am glad you can relate to moving house and that you enjoy the life lessons I weave into my poems. Thank you for always reading my work. I appreciate it. Take care.

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

Thank you, Charlie. Much appreciated.

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on December 18, 2020:

Thank you so much, John, for writing a funny poem on El Jefe. I shared it with my friend and we had a good laugh. Congrats on your 50th publication.What a golden moment.

Chrish Canosa from Manila Philippines on December 18, 2020:

I can relate a lot " The moving house "

Ooooof I still can feel my exhaust body and soul. I enjoyed all the poems Sir John! A bunge of thanks for sharing it with us, most specially the life lessons beyond those poems is what I really appreciate. It feels like you're welcoming us with open arms saying everything won't go as you expected. You teach us to be ready and be aware of it thank you. Lots of love from the Philippines :-)

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

Ann, Thank you for that. All good now. Thank you for the kind comment and continuing to follow the series. I will keep them coming. Have a wonderful Christmas.

Charlie Halliday from Scotland on December 18, 2020:

Congratulations on reaching the 50th edition of poems from the porch.

Another great edition John

Ann Carr from SW England on December 18, 2020:

Congratulations, John! A great 50th anthology too!

Just a proof-read - El Jefe, 3rd verse, second line, I think it should be 'joint'!

I love the one about moving, especially the bit regarding taking a bit of the place with you and leaving a little of you behind; that's exactly right, though I'd never really thought about it.

I always look forward to your next contribution to our poetry on HP. The porch is a perfect place to write and a perfect place to read, so let's just keep them coming please!

Hope you and yours have a wonderful Christmas and a much better new year than this one has been!


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

Thank you, Pamela. Who would have thought this series would have got to number 50? Not me. Thank you for reading and for your interesting comment. We were forced to downsize with our last move, but still have lots of stuff. Ok, I can have a think about "loss as we age" for a future poem.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on December 18, 2020:

The 50th edition of poems from the porch is a cause for celebration. I look forward to reading your poem and hope you don't stop writing them. I topic of loss as we age might be a good topic also as I have been trying to downsize our home over the last two years a little at a time.

I really like how you included the loss of comments into the first poem. Each poem was excellent, John. I like your diferent perspective on junk mail also.

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

Rosina, I am so glad you could relate to those poems 'Moving House' and 'Junk Mail.' I have moved a lot and never enjoy it. Every time seems harder than the one before. Thank you for reading and for your interesting comment and congratulations.

Rosina S Khan on December 18, 2020:

So glad this is the 50th edition of Poems from the Porch. Congratulations!

All the poems are lovely in this collection, as always. The poem "El Jefe" ~ The Boss really reminds us of HP returning the comments. LOL!

I remember when I was in High School and my best friend didn't have a land phone, I used to write long letters to her during long vacations and she used to write back too. I enjoyed it very much then. But now with the advent of the internet we can communicate by email at a faster pace.

On the Outside Looking In is something I wouldn't like or be comfortable with. It just isn't my cup of tea.

Moving House is relatable to me. While I have been in my country, I have made two home shifts with family so far. Both the times, it was a huge matter of decluttering books and notebooks of me and my other three siblings although two of them do not live with us any longer but some of their belongings stayed with us.

Thank you, John, for the fabulous poems you have shared in this edition. I loved "Moving House" and "A Deluge of Junk Mail" especially in today's collection.

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

Chitrangada, I am so glad you can relate to these poems, and I greatly appreciate your support and comments. We just have to wait and see what happens with them.

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on December 17, 2020:

Congratulations John, for the 50th installment of Poems from the Porch.

What a wonderful and creative series.

I enjoyed reading all your poems, so close to our lives.

You reminded me of the real mail boxes of our earlier days. I loved receiving handwritten letters from my loved ones, and writing back to them.

Yes, like everyone else, I wish the comments are reinstated soon.

Thanks for sharing.

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

Thank you for reading this, Nithya, and for getting in before it moves to Discover. Glad you could relate to 'Moving House' and 'El Jefe.'

Nithya Venkat from Dubai on December 17, 2020:

Great poems, I enjoyed reading them. I can totally relate to “Moving House”.

"El Jefe" ~ The Boss-rings true of what is happening here on Hubpages. I miss reading all the comments and I hope they reinstate the comment section soon.

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