The Porch

I sent this story in to the Sun a month or so back. I figured if they don't publish it at least I can put it on here.

The theme for the story needed to based around the idea of a porch so I wrote about a summer spent on a broken down old porch in the quickly disappearing farmlands of Habersham county. Here goes:

The Porch

Two years after graduating from high school a good friend of mine found himself living in a worn out double wide trailer with a makeshift porch tacked to the front. We spent all of one hot Georgia summer shoving cigarette butts and beer caps through the gaps between the planks. The porch sat low to the ground and was covered overhead by a gently sloping shingled roof. Carpenter bees, the big fuzzy ones with black behinds, drilled holes and made homes in which to raise their offspring in the soft pine wood beams that supported the roof.

Humid afternoons and evenings gave over to great thunderstorms that rolled in from the Plains or up from the Gulf. With the first signs of those ominous thunderheads gathering in the west we would pull up our chairs beneath that low slung shelter and watch rain slide off the gutter less roof in sheets, slicing up the earth beneath it with such ferocity that veins of thick red clay burst to the surface, turning puddles and pools the color of blood.

On quieter nights, nights when we ran out of alcohol and money, I would sink into the dusty red recliner that had a permanent home on the porch and listen to the boards creak beneath my slow gentle rocking. Staring into the darkness I would listen to the distant sound of whippoorwills calling to each other from some invisible place beyond the reach of my sight.

For a time, this porch became the stage on which we were the main characters telling our stories, getting drunk, getting sober and acting out one long summer of our then young and foolish lives.


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