Temperatures in the Midwest
were finally turning cooler
the central air conditioning was turned off
Life couldn’t be greater
now read every day on her front porch
Porch was so pleased,
since Mrs. C had hidden inside from the heat
most of the summer
The grandfather clock in the front hall
was feeling the pleasant breezes
from the front door
His wood was getting dry and old
He was glad that Porch was nearby
“How do you do it?” Clock called out to Porch.
“How do you remain cheerful
when people don’t come out and sit very much anymore?”
“I just remind myself
that I can always be counted on
when people actually remember to come outside and relax.”
“How do YOU remain cheerful, Old Grandfather?”
Porch asked Clock.
“But I’m not cheerful,” Clock corrected his friend.
“You just can’t see my thoughts behind my face.
I am mad that people around here
let me wind down
and don’t wind me up again — for DAYS!”
Another example of things not being as they seem
was handed to Porch through all his time-worn, paintless planks.
“Oh, you’re feeling forgotten?” asked Porch.
“Yes, that’s right,” answered Clock.
“How can I keep my family on time
if they don’t remember to wind me every day?”
“I guess that’s out of your control,” said Porch.
“Maybe you just have to be glad for the times you are telling the correct time.”
“True,” Clock agreed,
shifting his weight so he only rested on
two legs instead of four.
“Hey – do you think you could wind me up, Porch?”
“Um, maybe you’ve never seen me,” came the reply,
“but I am big and bulky, I have no hands and fingers
to do what you are asking me to.
But I can ask Squirrel to help you out!”
Clock eagerly began huffing and puffing,
moving slowly toward Porch
because he was a heavy grandfather clock
and too old to be waltzing lightly to the front door.
Once Clock got to the door,
he pushed against the screen door
so that Squirrel could come inside
It didn’t take Squirrel very long
to shimmy up Clock and retrieve the key
and then wind up the poor old clock
“Hey – maybe that’s what we can be happy about,” said Porch.
“We may not always feel needed, but we give darn good service
to others when they need us.
And you, Squirrel, thank you for coming to our aid today!”
“You’re welcome, guys,” Squirrel said.
For the first time, Porch and Clock saw each other.
Clock couldn’t wave at Porch because
his hands were needed to keep the right time
but Porch understood.
Squirrel looked from one to the other, transfixed.
And he let a bunch of flies into the house
but no one cared.