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Poems from the Porch 22

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

Poetry is Freedom, Image by Angela Yuriko Smith from Pixabay

Poetry is Freedom, Image by Angela Yuriko Smith from Pixabay

For me, poetry is an evasion of the real job of writing prose

— Sylvia Plath

The Value of Poetry

Firstly, welcome to the porch. Old friends and new acquaintances are all welcome here. It's a place where we all sit back and relax to enjoy each others company as we share a few poems requested by our friends and colleagues.

I often wonder why poetry seems to be so undervalued in the world today, or so it seems to me. In days gone by, poets like Frost, Keats, Byron, Tennyson, Wordsworth, Shakespeare, Browning, Poe, Plath etc. etc. etc. were revered and cherished among the foremost writers of their time. The list is almost endless and I could go on and on.

Why have things changed so much in this day and age? Most poets seem to be treated or seen as second class writers, and I find that sad. Even here on HubPages, where I constantly read in forums that this isn't the place for poetry and creative writing (at least if we want to make money, or appear on the first page of a Google search.) I am sure there are others here like me whose first choice of reading is poetry and short fiction.

This series, for example, languishes on HubPages with no indication of being moved to Letterpile (not that this bothers me) except for the fact that edition 20 that was just one poem about PTSD and had a different title was moved. So, maybe HP just doesn't like to have a series on the niche sites.

Another worry is that most of the Poems From the Porch are now my lowest scoring hubs at just 60 despite all falling in the range of the preferred word count of stellar hubs, having additional information apart from just poems, callouts, videos etc.

Anyway, that's my rant for the week. I just wish poetry was given a little more value. If you are still here, after my whining, please sit back and enjoy the following poems.

The three Sisters, Blue Mountains, NSW, Australia

The three Sisters, Blue Mountains, NSW, Australia

Chris Mills

"Most of us here will never get to visit your part of the world. There is so much to know. In your poem in honor and memory of my late wife, you told us about The Rock. I would like to know more about your world, so, yes, I'll request it, the obvious, a poem, please, about kangaroos."


It would be my pleasure, Chris. Here is a poem about kangaroos, just for you.

Kangaroos are just T-Rex deers.

Think about it.

— Annonymous

Macropus Giganteus (a big buck and two does) Image by Holger Detje from Pixabay

Macropus Giganteus (a big buck and two does) Image by Holger Detje from Pixabay

The Kangaroo

There are many strange and wondrous beasts spread this whole world through,

But very few of them compare to Australia’s kangaroo.

Colloquially they’re just called roos. The males bucks, boomers, jacks,

While females are does, flyers, jills. The young just joeys, that’s a fact.


Collectively their name’s a mob, a troop, or sometimes court.

If you approach a big red buck you may feel rather short.

The largest marsupial in the world can grow two metres (6’7”) tall.

Red kangaroos are biggest, and wallabies quite small.


Like a giant rat/deer hybrid, a large vertebrate that bounds,

A macropod - that’s “large foot,” that rarely makes a sound.

When threatened it can balance upon its powerful tail

And strike out with its clawed hind feet, especially a big male.


A new-born joey is minuscule, being peanut sized at best.

It slowly climbs up to the pouch to find its mother’s breast.

In the pouch the young one stays until it’s grown enough

To venture out from time to time around the sixth month.

Wallabies, small members of the kangaroo family. Image by sandid from Pixabay

Wallabies, small members of the kangaroo family. Image by sandid from Pixabay

The symbol of Australia, on our coins and Coat of Arms,

Though they’re shot for meat, and leather hides, and to protect grazing land from harm.

It’s used in company logos, like Qantas’ flying kangaroo,

The Royal Australian Airforce, and our football team’s name too.


Before the recent drought and fires there was a booming roo population,

But now we have to wait and see the result of the destruction.

Native wildlife perished, in numbers still unknown

But the kangaroo is resilient so numbers soon should grow.


How did the kangaroo get its name? This is open to conjecture,

But perhaps the most amusing myth is the one I’ll share here with you:


In 1770 when Cook and Banks first saw the curious creature,

It’s said they asked, “What is it called?” of the local native people.

One member of the tribe replied with one word, “kanguru.”

But what his answer really meant was, “I do not understand you!”

Li-Jen Hew

"Hi Jodah, I didn't add my request in my comment below. I would like you to write a poem about how poetry brings together people from all walks of life, like this series! But if it's not appropriate, then you can write a funny poem about waiting. You can write both topics if you like!"

Well. Li-Jen, the first one was very appropriate, but I wrote both poems for you anyway. I hope you like them.

I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.

— Maya Angelou

How Poetry Brings Together People From All Walks of Life

No matter where you live on Earth

Or what language you speak,

Australian, Indian, or Brit,

American, Chinese, Greek.


Each country has its poets

Who use the power of verse

To educate, inform, amuse,

For better or for worse.


They write about injustice,

Or the beauty all around,

Tributes to those deserving.

Their words may be profound.


No matter your profession,

Your status or your fame,

Poetry can span divides

And make us all the same.


Image by Nuno Lopes from Pixabay

Image by Nuno Lopes from Pixabay

Some poets may be popular,

Be well-known across the world,

A country’s Poet Laureate,

Or write books for boys and girls.


Others may be quite unknown,

Write for family and friends,

But their poems are cherished

By the audience it lends.


Poetry can touch you,

It can make you laugh or cry,

It can make you seethe with anger,

Or close your eyes and fly.


If everyone read poetry,

Each creed, religion, race,

The world could live in harmony,

It would be the ideal place.

Birch Twigs, Image by pasja1000 from Pixabay

Birch Twigs, Image by pasja1000 from Pixabay

Waiting for the fish to bite or waiting for wind to fly a kite. Or waiting around for Friday night or waiting perhaps for their Uncle Jake or a pot to boil or a better break or a string of pearls or a pair of pants or a wig with curls or another chance. Everyone is just waiting.

— Dr Seuss

I Hate Waiting

I hate waiting - in a line.

My wife says, “Just relax. It’s fine.”

I hate waiting - for someone

To finish shopping - that’s not fun.

I hate waiting - to be paid,

There’s things I need - for weeks I’ve prayed.

I hate waiting - for a bus,

Being late for work - causes a fuss.

I hate waiting - to be served,

It makes me bored - gets on my nerves.

I hate waiting - at the dentist,

Why doesn’t he - hire an apprentice?

I hate waiting - for results.

If I fail - it’s not my fault.

I hate waiting - to be published.

It makes me think - my writing’s rubbish.

I hate waiting - exclamation #*@!!

“Stop complaining - just be patient!”

Impatient passenger, Image by TitusStaunton from Pixabay

Impatient passenger, Image by TitusStaunton from Pixabay

Coming Poetry Requests

Thank you for reading and I hope to see you back on the porch next week.

Upcoming poems have been requested by Shauna Bowling, Bill Holland, Linda Lum, and Audrey Hunt. Hopefully these will be in the next anthology.

Bye for now.

© 2020 John Hansen

Comments

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 29, 2020:

Flourish, that may not be such a bad idea having a weekly topic. It would actually make it easier for me as well. I'd just have to work out how to go about it. If I ask my readers to choose a topic for the week how will I prevent them from all choosing different ones?

Unless I present a list and take votes, maybe.

I am glad you have seen my poetry improve over the years.

FlourishAnyway from USA on February 29, 2020:

It seems pretty random that a successful series would not make it to Letterpile. Your poems are good quality and I’ve seen them get better and better over the years. I liked the kangaroo and waiting poems especially. Perhaps you can flip the series notion on its head and ask readers to give you a weekly general topic (e.g., depression, kangaroos, cats, Mondays) then have a standard template of the types of poems you write each week for every topic (e.g., limerick, funny rhyming poem, etc.). That way you can have a variety of poems on one general topic and can call it “Poems About (Topic)”. It should be Letterpile eligible that way eh? Add “Poems from the Porch” as a paragraph within and tell how the series works. (You should never run out of weekly topics this way.) Just an idea.

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

Rasma, I always appreciate you reading my work. Who doesn't love kangaroos? :)

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

Really enjoyed these and oh, those wonderful kangaroos hoping about.

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

Good to see you, Verlie. Frost’s words are true. I don’t think there are many wealthy poets, unless they made their money another way. We certainly don’t write poetry primarily for the money.

Verlie Burroughs from Canada on February 18, 2020:

Love your Kangaroo piece John and all the great quotes and accompanying photos. I think it was Frost that said "poetry is a beggar". We (poets) all know that but we still do it. Good to see such an enthusiastic following of your Porch series!

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 17, 2020:

Thank you for the encouraging comment MsDora. I love it. Can I use that description of my poetry on my profile or resume..lol? Much appreciated.

Dora Weithers from The Caribbean on February 17, 2020:

First, I could never think of a poet as a second-class writer. I admire good poetry, and some (including yours, John) that I've read on HubPages are among the best anywhere. Yours are versatile: playful, informative, inspiring, reflective, practical, instructional. They deserve more appreciation.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 16, 2020:

It was my pleasure Li-Jen, I enjoyed filling your requests. I am glad you were satisfied with the results. Thank you for your continued support of the series.

Li-Jen Hew on February 16, 2020:

Hi Jodah. Thanks for fulfilling my 2 requests and I am pleased with the result because I know that you are able to connect the dots, and in a poetic way. I appreciate your attempt to tick off the funny criteria of the waiting poem because you did manage to make it light hearted. I also did not realise the resemblance of the kangaroo to a deer. And you're right, the kangaroo thumps its tail. Sounds like a dinosaur! I support your continuation of the Poem from the Porch series. Your topics are appealing and there will always be room for your poems regardless of whether HP moves them to another HP network site. Thanks a lot!

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 15, 2020:

I am pleased that you enjoy this series Audrey. I know exactly what you mean about writing poetry. Once I start a poem the words just flow with very little thought, unlike prose.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 15, 2020:

I am pleased that you enjoy this series Audrey. I know exactly what you mean about writing poetry. Once I start a poem the words just flow with very little thought, unlike prose.

Audrey Hunt from Idyllwild Ca. on February 15, 2020:

I love your" Poems From The Porch" and especially how you're able to create poetry from any subject. Admirable!

When I write poetry, truth prevails. I can share my feelings through poetry with total freedom. This doesn't happen when I write articles. It's as though the words spring forth from a different place inside me.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 14, 2020:

Thank you Tiyasha. Your comment is greeting appreciated.

Tiyasha Maitra from Gurgaon on February 14, 2020:

A lovely collection. Thanks for sharing the kangaroo poem. Not only fun to read but also highly informative. I enjoyed the take on waiting as well. So very relatable and engaging.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 14, 2020:

Thank you Clive. That’s Buckaroo Bonsai to you lol.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 14, 2020:

Thank you Peggy, I am glad you find my poems informative and enjoyable. I am sure the kangaroos will bounce back, they are very resilient creatures.

Clive Williams from Jamaica on February 14, 2020:

These are pretty good. I like the kangaroo

keep it up buckaroo

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on February 14, 2020:

Your Poems from the Porch are all so enjoyable to read. Not only are they entertaining, but they are also informative. I hope that the kangaroos and other wildlife in your homeland rebound after those horrific fires.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 14, 2020:

Thank you for the encouragement and positivity, Shauna. I just don’t understand HP management sometimes. Glad you learned a few things about kangaroos from that poem, and yes the one about poetry bringing people together was from my heart.

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on February 14, 2020:

John, I don't know why poetry isn't as appreciated and revered as it was centuries ago. Perhaps today's readers would rather not exercise their brains through interpretation and rely on the author to tell them how the story ends and how it got there. Just a guess....

I love all the poems in this edition. I learned a lot from The Kangaroo. They're so cool!

How Poetry Brings People Together came from your heart. I felt it. And it's true. Just look at all who read your poetry! Even more testimony to the thread poetry creates is the requests you receive in this series from all over the world.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 14, 2020:

Thank you form the wonderful comment manatita. I agree with you on the pros and cons of writing poetry to a theme. Sometimes I struggle with the topics given to me but other times it just flows so easily with barely a thought.

manatita44 from london on February 14, 2020:

Lovely poems. Kangaroos have always been of interest to us here in the West and yes, sometimes their fate is rather like the African elephants or Rhinos.

Themes do help our writing. Still, one of the difficulties in getting themes, is that while there are some we can just run with, like a river. Others can be more of a struggle. I find that my best poems are those that come to me naturally … intuitively.

Again, a theme can also strike a chord or perhaps a first line so powerful to the poet, that he/she runs with the poem, like a river in full flow. Do you experience it like that?

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 14, 2020:

Hey Nikki, it's my pleasure to share and if people keep requesting and reading I will just keep doing it. Thank you.

Nikki Khan from London on February 14, 2020:

Some great poems this week. I enjoyed all of them. Especially, 'I hate writing'. Such a big laugh on this one.

Thanks for sharing with us each week, John. Good work.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 14, 2020:

Thank you for reading this Devika. I am glad the message came through in the poem.

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 14, 2020:

John I like your poems and with a great meaning to the Marsupials. It is not a good approach to kill kangaroos. However, you have made a point heard through your poem.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 13, 2020:

Hi Lora, so glad these brought a smile to your face. Yes, I hope they stop roo culling now with so many having been wiped out due to the fires. it's great to know that the poem about poetry bringing people together, and "I Hate Waiting" was fun to write.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 13, 2020:

Chris, I am pleased you were happy with 'the kangaroo" poem. Thanks for the thumbs up regarding my work too. Much appreciated.

Lora Hollings on February 13, 2020:

Fabulous and funny poems, John!

What a great analogy for the kangaroo- a cross between a T-Rex and a deer. I love the poem about Australia's best known marsupial, The Kangaroo. But, I hope that they stop shooting them especially with the fires taking such a toll on all these animals. They don't know how many are left and all of these animals need a break! I just love Skippy. My favorite poem for this week was "How Poetry Brings Together People From All Walks of Life." You did a great job in your verse on weaving many elements together and I Hate Waiting was funny and so true! It seems that we spend half of our lives waiting. Thoroughly enjoyed.

Chris Mills from Traverse City, MI on February 13, 2020:

John, This is a strong collection of your work. Thank you for the kangaroo poem. It is everything and more than I expected. I am so glad you included their devastation in the wild fires.

Your work is valued and appreciated by many here on HP if not the staff of HP. Thank you for doing what you do so well.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 13, 2020:

Hi Linda. Thank you for reading and I am glad you found the kangaroo poem entertaining and educational.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on February 13, 2020:

I love the fact that you've created an enjoyable poem about kangaroos that both entertains us and educates us! Thanks for another enjoyable edition of Poems from the Porch, John.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 13, 2020:

Thank you so much, Chitrangada. I am happy that you enjoyed that particular poem. That is my desire for what I want poetry to achieve. The Blue Mountains where the three sisters are located is a beautiful part of Australia, sadly though it is also one of the most badly effected by fire.

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on February 13, 2020:

Beautiful work John. I enjoyed all your compositions, from the porch. Especially, the second one—Poetry does bring together people, from all walks of life, from over the World.

The picture of the three sisters, Blue Mountains is awesome.

Great work, as always. Thanks for sharing.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 13, 2020:

Hey MizB, I am happy you enjoyed these poems. Thanks for the visit. Glad your hubby liked "T-Rex Deer" too.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 13, 2020:

I appreciate that Liz, but what can you do. I even went through them and edited a couple. They rose a couple of points and then plummeted..one is down to 59. I have never had a hub rate so low. Glad you found the "Waiting" one relevant.

Doris James MizBejabbers from Beautiful South on February 13, 2020:

Love your porch today, especially the one about 'roos. "Kanguru" is so logical, lol. The poem about waiting hit me broadside. My husband enjoyed the comment about T-Rex deer.

Liz Westwood from UK on February 13, 2020:

John, your Poems from the Porch deserve a much higher score. Once again you have produced a great selection. The Waiting one I think I should print and keep nearby as it resonates so much.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 13, 2020:

Hi Kyler. I am glad that these poems were helpful in brightening your day. Thank you for taking the time to visit the porch.

Kyler J Falk from Corona, CA on February 13, 2020:

These really brightened my dull day! Thank you for these, John!

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 13, 2020:

Hi Linda, I do like to try writing an different styles, it is half the fun of the series. As for the powers that be, I do not feel that they understand poetry or creative writing, it’s not all about the money,,

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 13, 2020:

I am glad you share my sentiments about poetry, Ruby. Kangaroos are amazing animals..not as smart as Skippy makes out though lol.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 13, 2020:

Thank you very much, Umesh.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 13, 2020:

Thank you so much Lorna. I am glad The Kangaroo brought back memories and that you could relate to the other poems. Cheers.

Linda Lum from Washington State, USA on February 13, 2020:

John, I love your poetry. You don't have just one style--you seem comfortable with any type of verse. As for the powers that be of Hubs they seem to have no room in their hearts for series. Everything that I write, with the exception of the Monday Q&A, goes to the niche site.

Ruby Jean Richert from Southern Illinois on February 13, 2020:

John, I share your words about poetry. Your score on Hubpages should be high. I have actually read words like," Poetry is not writing, anyone can rhyme. " I am moved to tears from some writers here, but nothing soothes my soul like a poem, and you are a favorite of mine. I loved all of your poems today, esp. about the kangaroo. I am amazed that they have a pouch for their babies, I would love to hold one.

Umesh Chandra Bhatt from Kharghar, Navi Mumbai, India on February 13, 2020:

A good collection and inpressive ones. Nice reading. Thanks

Lorna Lamon on February 13, 2020:

I look forward to reading these wonderful collections John - my time to relax. "The Kangaroo" really does symbolise all that is wonderful about Australia and your poem took me back there. I agree that poetry really does connect us all in a good and healthy way. It has a language all of its own and this poem is beautifully written, in particular the last verse. I used to hate waiting, however, if it happens I take a deep breath and try to remember that sometimes I keep people waiting. I am in awe at how you manage to create these incredible collections, best enjoyed over a cuppa. So good.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 13, 2020:

Thank you, Bill. We can hope. Thanks for the “flat tire” prompt. I like it.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on February 13, 2020:

I completely agree with you about poetry. Even though I can't write it, I have great admiration for those who write it well. Here's hoping the HP gods see the light.

Great edition.....another topic for the future....a flat tire!

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on February 13, 2020:

Hey John I figure that as long as I touch one person a week. That is cool. You inspire by your inspirations.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 13, 2020:

Hi Eric. I don't really mind waiting as much as the poem indicates. I usually make use of the time reading, writing, or people watching.

I will never understand the scoring system used here, but oh well, what can we do? As long as people enjoy reading what we write that's all that matters.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on February 13, 2020:

I love waiting it is an excuse to do nothing but hang out and watch. My boy and I together and he calls it quality time.

Crappy about the scoring. Seems to me you hit quality standards to a tee. Man o man it took a year to get "the Boy Teacher" out of the lows.

No question on the wonderful words bringing us together.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on February 13, 2020:

Greetings to you, Poeticnurse. I am glad to know you enjoyed these pieces and I appreciate you taking the time to visit the porch. Best wishes.

Poeticnurse from Nigeria on February 13, 2020:

It's disheartening to see how poets are being treated in our time but we hope for better days.

Nevertheless, I love these pieces darn! Thank you Jonah for putting Porch 22 out to us.

Warm greetings.