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"The Old Front Porch"

I drove by the old house yesterday.
There was snow on the spintered
railing, and the gaping glassless
windows seemed to look out with 
dignity instead of ignored pathos.
Snow has a way of making all 
things beautiful with their 
ugliness hidden for a time.

That old front porch could tell
a thousand stories,
stories of hot summers when we
sat there with our lemonade
hoping it would rain,
waiting for the clouds to darken
and their heavy load splash 
to the ground,
then all of us would run with 
abandon through the drops.

When we were older, I remember
sitting on that porch, taking 
that cold iced tea glass and 
running it over my forehead 
and cheeks, then the expanse 
of my chest not covered by my 
old cotton dress. I'd lay my
head back against the cushion
of the porch swing and glide 
slowly to and fro to the music 
on the radio, and sometimes 
when my beau came to call, we'd 
get lost in that easy action of
just being young and alive.

A thousand stories on that old
front porch, but now it is just
a snow-crowned skeleton, waiting
to die.


Judith Anne Labriola
copyright Feb 2001

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