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Poems From the Porch 63

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

A sculptor at work: Image by Ana Krach from Pixabay

A sculptor at work: Image by Ana Krach from Pixabay

Artistic Expression

The overriding theme in this week's collection of poems is "art." From pencils, crayons, and whittling wood to poetry they all have some connection to "artistic expression." Well, the only one that doesn't is the poem about stars but, saying that, many artists, musicians and writers have used the stars for inspiration, so maybe even that is connected.

Most of us have at least one form of art that we are skilled in, admire, or at least have an interest in as a hobby. For many here, it is writing but many of you would have other talents as well. For me, it is poetry, writing in general, and sketching. I can't play a musical instrument to help myself.

Please, let me know your hidden artistic talents in the comments. Also. I need more prompts and suggestions for future poems. This edition of Poems From the Porch brings me to the end of my list of suggestions, so to keep the series chugging along, don't be shy, give me your ideas.

Now, let's sit back and enjoy this week's requested poems.

How about writing something about the Stars in the night sky?

— Brenda Arledge

Stars and lovers: Image by Mihai Paraschiv from Pixabay

Stars and lovers: Image by Mihai Paraschiv from Pixabay

Stars in the Night Sky

Gaze at the stars in the night sky,

untouchable by you and I.

We can’t see planets such as Mars,

just a million twinkling stars.

Falling stars may catch attention,

but wishes made I will not mention,

on a sun that’s light years gone

although its sparkle lingers on.

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Are there life-forms out there beyond

this sphere called Earth, where we belong?

We will probably never know

as long as the stars keep their glow.

So, you're running low on prompts. Let's see..... How about writing about a box of crayons? I'm thinking about how the tangible sparks the intangible: emotions, creativity, etc. But, your muse is on fire, so I look forward to which direction she takes you!

— Shauna L Bowling

Pastel Crayons: Image by StockSnap from Pixabay

Pastel Crayons: Image by StockSnap from Pixabay

A Box of Crayons

A humble box of crayons

vivid colours housed within,

sits upon the artist’s desk.

The box made from battered tin.

Masterpieces have emerged

from the cylinders of wax.

Colours vivid, deep, and rich

when the canvas is attacked.

Red and orange, blue and yellow

pastels slashed across the page,

by the artist’s expert hands.

In control at every stage.

A work of art’s created

by crayons combined with skill.

In a hundred years from now

art critics will praise it still.


Here are some crazy topics for you.

Sharpening pencils

Whittling wood

— Peggy Woods

Sharpening Pencils ~ Limerick 1

I was busily sharpening pencils

to use in conjunction with stencils

but the pencils kept breaking

and my poor heart kept aching

so I ate a big bowl of lentils.

Sharpening pencils: Image by Luisella Planeta Leoni from Pixabay

Sharpening pencils: Image by Luisella Planeta Leoni from Pixabay

Whittling Wood ~ A Limerick 2

He whittled wood all night and day,

he couldn't put his whittling tools away.

But whittling wood got boring fast

and so to give his life a blast

he gave it up and now sculpts clay.

By the way, John have you ever thought on writing a poem on yourself as a poet? How would you describe yourself as a poet? What makes you tick as a gifted poet?

— Ravi Rajan

Writing necessities: Image by Edar from Pixabay

Writing necessities: Image by Edar from Pixabay

It's All About Me - Oh No!

As a toddler, I liked all books that rhymed,

Dr Seuss was there at my bedtime.

I began to sketch and draw cartoons,

from the time man first walked on the Moon.

I remember "anthology" books from school

and always thought writing poetry was cool.

Combining poems with bits of art,

the two pursuits that grabbed my heart.

I read Poe, Shelley, Frost and Keats,

Later poetry from the Beat.

Aussie poets "Banjo" Patterson,

and Henry Lawson, quite a larrikin.

Over time that passion waned,

as I grew and my life changed.

Graduated, began career,

Much partying and drinking beer.

Forget the sketching and the poems,

Job promotions, moving homes.

Getting married, raising kids,

Artistic expression hit the skids.

Image by cocoparisienne from Pixabay

Image by cocoparisienne from Pixabay

Then one day my desire returned,

within my heart embers still burned.

So, I began to write once more

about the things life had in store.

I'd observe people on the train

as I rode to work and home again.

Writing notes and sketching faces,

silly poems in crazy places.

My poems were not for public view,

some for my wife, and children too.

Just a means of my expression,

Not to gain public impression.

One or two for "Poet's Corner."

a column in the local paper.

Just so I could keep a clipping,

and do a tiny bit of bragging.

HubPages was an online site

I stumbled upon it late one night.

It seemed like a good place to start,

but soon it would capture my heart.

Image by SEBASTIEN MARTY from Pixabay

Image by SEBASTIEN MARTY from Pixabay

I dragged my notebooks out of storage

and for my old poems I would forage.

I reworked, improved, discarded some,

Those left, I published one by one.

Now my writing I could share,

though readers of my poems were rare.

But, over time I built a following -

my audience was slowly growing.

I wrote some essays and short fiction

to satisfy my new addiction.

More poetry was soon to follow,

though forums say it's hard to swallow.

Now, 500 articles and more

and many future ones in store.

This is my favourite place to write,

Other sites are fly by night.

Here I've made so many friends -

I hope HubPages never ends.

The community is like no other,

You are all my dear sisters and brothers.

Image by Nuno Lopes from Pixabay

Image by Nuno Lopes from Pixabay

You ask what makes this poet tick?

Do I have a special gift or trick?

'Contemporary' I can't deny,

but 'modern' I don't even try.

I prefer rhyme over free verse prose,

so relate to classics, I suppose.

My aim is to bring poetry back

from all those years it got off track.

Whether my poems may rhyme or not,

I want a steady flow and plot,

that sounds okay recited loud,

and writing them makes me feel proud.

I'm self-taught with no formal training

and write my best when it is raining.

I sometimes use old style and form,

so my poems are different from the norm.

I want to write for those who say,

"I don't understand poems anyway!"

No need for analysing here,

I want my message to be clear.

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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.

© 2021 John Hansen


John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 22, 2021:

Thank you Flourish, better late than never. Much appreciated.

FlourishAnyway from USA on June 22, 2021:

I enjoyed the last poem in particular. You've really hit your stride.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

I don’t know what it is about the rain, Mr. Happy, perhaps it is the sound. I just know that it relaxes me and I think that may be conducive to letting the mind flow free. Yes, I currently have 515 published articles here. It would be great to make it to a thousand..touch wood. Thank you for reading.

Mr. Happy from Toronto, Canada on June 21, 2021:

Thanks for sharing all that personal stuff.

"write my best when it is raining" - Is it the rain sounds? I like sleeping when it rains. I sleep sooo good!! So, ya I'd probably fall asleep, haha!! I prefer cool, sunny mornings, when it's quiet but I can write in many places/environments, depending on the need.

"Now, 500 articles and more

and many future ones in store." - Best of luck on many more and thanks for sharing until now - cheers!

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

Thank you so much, Mary. I always appreciate your comments.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

Hi Pamela. Thank you for reading and enjoying this week’s poems. Haha I would never have thought of writing a poem about sharpening pencils either without a prompt. Take care.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

Thanks Fran, it is great that I have inspired you to write a poem. I can’t wait to read it.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

Guess what Denise? Shel Silverstein is one of my favourite poets a well. I just hadn’t heard of him when I was at school. Yes, I once shared his snowball poem in one of my articles. Consider it done..a funny nonsense kids poem.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

Linda, cooking is most definitely an art as is making church banners. I would be honoured to write a poem in recognition of your marriage for your anniversary. I will send you an email for more details.

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on June 21, 2021:

I love the poem on yourself as a poet. I love rhyme, too, so I always enjoy reading the poems you publish. What a talent.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on June 21, 2021:

The Poems From the Porch today are wonderful, John. I like them all but particularly the poem where you told us about yourself.

I would have not thought of writing a poem about sharpening pencils. Very clever! This was a very enjoyable read. Thank you, John.

fran rooks from Toledo, Ohio on June 21, 2021:

John, you are so, so gifted. I love everything you write. And, so much so that it inspires me to attempt to try writing a poem myself! Thank you for your poems.

Denise McGill from Fresno CA on June 21, 2021:

Awesome story of your life as a poet. My favorite poet (besides yourself) isn't Shelly or Keats, but Shel Silverstein. The poem he wrote about the pet snowball cracks me up every time I read it. Can you write a ridiculous poem for children? One that makes the kids laugh or think of something in a new way like Runny Babbit?



Linda Lum from Washington State, USA on June 21, 2021:

Oh John, each one of these was enjoyable. Is it your Muse that encourages you to slip out of your 'traditional' form of verse and toss in a limerick once in a while?

If cooking can be considered art, I guess that's my talent, that and designing church banners.

As for prompts, I have a request. In about a month, my husband and I will be celebrating our 40th wedding anniversary. Can you offer something in recognition of a long, loving marriage. We've been through much, done much; through the good and the bad he has always been by my side. My best friend. You may email me if you wish.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

Hello Shauna. Good to see you my friend. Thank you for that lovely comment. It touched me. I am glad you enjoyed this collection of poems. Glad I met you through HubPages too. Take care.

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on June 21, 2021:

John, I love what you did with my prompt. Thank you for that.

"Sharpening Pencils" elicited a giggle from me at the last line. Too cute!

My favorite of all of them is the one about you. I learned a lot about you, your dreams, and your process. You have a born talent. To be as good as you are with no formal training is inspiring and awesome. I'm so glad you reawakened your passion. I would never have met you otherwise!

Excellent edition of Poems From the Porch, my friend!

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

Thank you for reading these poems of mine, Brenda. I used to live on top of a mountain in a place called Belthorpe. Truly, we were often in the middle of clouds was beautiful but so humid that everything was always covered in mould.

Yes, I love writing when it is raining. It seems to inspire me. Have a great week.

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on June 21, 2021:


This is a fantastic write all the way around.

I so enjoyed them all.

It was interesting to read your journey about your parhway to writing.

Rain...really? That's a new one for me. I'll have to try it out sometime.

The one on stars reminded me of the most beautiful dream I had last night.

I often wonder if I could touch the night sky, a cloud, or even a star if I was on top of a mountain.

I'm sure I can't, but maybe I'd be a bit closer.

Whittling & sharpening pencils was cute but I love the one you wrote for Shauna on a box of crayons.

Back in my younger school days, I played the coronet. It's like a miniature trumpet.

I was also a majorette, so I guess I had a few talents.

Not so much today. Maybe planting flowers.

Have a great day.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

Brittany, I admire all musicians, especially singers. I like to sing, but I pity anyone who has unlucky to be close by at the time. I am glad you enjoyed these poems. Thank you.

Brittany Benko from South Carolina on June 21, 2021:

Fantastic poems, John. I especially enjoyed the one about yourself and the stars. Before I got into poetry, I was actually into music. I was in advanced chorus for years and even sang back up vocals at my local church.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

Peggy, I am stoked that you enjoy this series so much. Thank you for being a regular reader and contributor. Nice suggestion, “sauerkraut.” I have never made it but I do like it and have made “kimchi” which is quite similar. I will certainly write a poem about it.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on June 21, 2021:

I love this series of yours and look forward to reading every entry. May it long continue! That last one about what inspires you was a fun one to read. Hobbies definitely enliven our lives.

Here is an idea for you. Making sauerkraut. My grandparents and parents used to do that each year when I was a child. My grandfather had a giant-sized garden. He actually had several. I loved tasting it as it matured in my grandparent's basement. I also loved the smell of it fermenting. It will be fun to see what you can do with this topic.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

We all have certain talents Bill. I can't build a grape arbor lol. Thanks for reading.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on June 21, 2021:

Brilliant as always, my friend. My artistic talents do not exist. lol I can't draw stick figures with any accuracy.

New request for the Porch Poetry Society......Dog Days of Summer

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

Thank you very much for reading Rozlin. I appreciate your generous comment.

Rozlin from UAE on June 21, 2021:

Wonderful collection of poems, John. I enjoyed reading. you are right, we should keep our hobbies too alive in our life. Thanks for sharing your pleasing work.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

Hi MsDora, thanks for confirming my messages are clear, insightful and fun. Glad you enjoyed the limericks too,

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

Thank you Nithya, yes sometimes our passions have to take a back seat to other things. As long as we reconnect with them it is all good.

Dora Weithers on June 21, 2021:

John, your messages are always clear. Plus you provide good information, insight and fun. I enjoyed the limericks and all your offerings today. Thank you.

Nithya Venkat from Dubai on June 21, 2021:

A great collection of poems Jodah. I enjoyed reading them. I am glad you got back to writing and sketching. We forget our passions somewhere along the way trying to figure out our lives.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

It's all good, Misbah.

Misbah Sheikh from — This Existence Is Only an Illusion on June 21, 2021:

Sorry, John. It was supposed to be, "May God gives you all the victory"

I have written "make" in the above comment. Ignore the errors. I was seriously rubbing my eyes at that moment...Lol

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

Aww Misbah, thank you for honouring me with that lovely poem. I do really like it, it is heartfelt and touching. I greatly appreciate it, especially your composing it when you had just awoken. Blessings to you also.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

Hi Chitrangada. thank you for always reading what I write, sharing your artistic talents, and for your lovely comment. Take care.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

Dear Rosina, I thank you for saying that each edition of these poems gets better and better. I don't think I said much that is new about myself, but some may not know me that well. I am glad you loved that poem however. Thank you also for sharing your hobbies.

Misbah Sheikh from — This Existence Is Only an Illusion on June 21, 2021:

John, I was seriously missing the porch. Here's a tribute to you. It could go silly as I just woke up. Fasten your seat belts. Let's start.

Today your topic is "art,"

it's truly very close to my heart.

Every single word you said make a rhyme.

Going up and down like a salt mine.

You are the one who makes me smile,

coz all of your poem always shine

You are the poet and you are Blessed

Forget the forums whatever they said

Just keep your muse awake for us

There are many here who can create a fuss

Here we all are your dear brother and sister

Keep writing because you are our dear

Let me congratulate you on your skills here

You have many but you are not familiar

You touch the heart by your poetry

You said it all and solve the mystery

Making us happy is all your history

Make God gives you all the victory

You deserve much more than you know

Let me finish it before it snow

You are the one who cheers up mood

Keep writing poetic pieces wearing a hood

I love all of your poems. Ignore this poem, if you don't like. I have written for you while rubbing my eyes . I was just writing whatever was coming out. By the way I just woke up. I am sure my day would go awesome today. Oh! my God I need to grab myself a cup of tea. You carry on!! Keep writing you are an inspiration.

I loved your last poem. All about you. It touched my heart. For this I thank you!!!

Blessings always....

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on June 21, 2021:

Hello John!

An enjoyable read of another session of poems from the porch.

I agree with you, that everyone has some kind of creative talent. It can be drawing, sketching, painting, sculpture, pottery and so on. Writing poetry, of course is a kind of artistic talent. We may term it as, art in words.

I have been inclined towards art in any form, and fortunately good at painting and music, both vocal and instrumental.

Enjoyed your poems, especially with reference to HubPages—how you found it, made friends, and have already completed 500 articles/ poems. Many more to come.

I have always admired your creativity. Thank you so much for sharing.

Rosina S Khan on June 21, 2021:

Lovely collection of poetry and I think with each edition it gets better and even better. I loved the poem about yourself as a poet the best. It was nice to know about you in-depth but then there are many things about you we already know. The other poems were fantastic too.

By the way, my hobbies are playing music on my harmonium, singing, cooking, reading, and writing.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on June 21, 2021:

Hello Moondot (EK), thank you for being the first to read this article. I appreciate your kind comment, and yes, I am sure you can succeed at anything you put your mind to. All the best.

EK Jadoon from Abbottabad Pakistan on June 21, 2021:

Jodah, I was waiting for the porch. As always, you have created a wonderful collection of poems. Well, people around me use to say that I am very talented. Lol. And I think if I want to do anything—I do it. Whatever it is, I always challenge myself and try my best to come up with the desired result.

And you are a wonderful poet who can write and sketch any moment or situation.

Stay safe and healthy...

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