Lessons of Porch Time

I hope you’ll excuse my tardiness.  We are in Broxton and that means we are on “porch time.”  Keeping time by watching the sunshine as it crosses the blue gray planks of the porch floor, by counting the cars as they pass, or by Grammy’s calls to join her at the table is a gift and a blessing that I must soak up while I am here.

Just as I settled in to write this morning one of the trucks passing slowed to a stop and my dear second cousin once or twice removed Charlie joined us on the porch for a nice visit.  He interrupted Grammy’s breakfast preparations, but all that didn’t matter because when you are living by porch time all other household activity stops for a visitor.

Conversations in white rockers...

Conversations in white rockers is the most precious commodity on the porch. 

Charlie is a “retired” farmer and to him I’ve always been “Little Margaret.”  In the classic Southern tradition, he is a great conversationalist who shares stories in vivid detail, laughs with gusto, and listens intently to others’ sharing.  His warm embrace and genuine smile are always something I look forward to on my visits here.

This morning, as with any morning I linger on the porch for a brief period of time, my mind inevitably begins to wonder how I can hold on to the magic of the porch when I leave.  Through years of experimentation I’ve found that buying a couple of white rockers, wind chimes, bird feeders, and plants to recreate this magic elsewhere isn’t the answer.  The enchantment of the porch is bound in the invitation it represents to be in relationship with those that stop here to rest for a moment before they move on.  That invitation emanates from the hearts transformed by love who live here.  [smile]

Knowing that the magic of the porch comes from within gives me hope that even when I’m not surrounded by the beauty of a South Georgia springtime or sitting in a white rocker, I can still choose to live on porch time.  For now though I’m going to soak up the goodness of lingering on the porch for a bit longer and let the love surrounding me begin to ready my heart to invite others to join me in porch time wherever my journey next leads.

-Margaret

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