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The back porch

David Wilson for The Boston Globe

The front porch is for watching the world. The back porch is where you sit with your thoughts. You can hear the breeze in the trees back here. Feel it kiss your cheek. Listen as it bounces from one yard to the next. The back porch is where you see what your neighbors wear, clothes resting on laundry lines. It’s where discarded toys lie about. Where you come to sit. Out front, that’s where you go to be entertained. It’s where you see who’s coming and going, who has company, whose argument has spilled into the street. The front porch is where you hear the ice cream truck before you see it. It’s where a view of the city cuts the horizon, so close yet ever far away. Back. Front. Safe versus unsafe. At least, that’s what some people say.

Akilah Johnson

Akilah Johnson can be reached at ajohnson@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @akjohnson1922.