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A Small Town - Somewhere Between Here and There

John was born and raised in Australia. Subsequently, he is interested in all things Australian: language, sport and culture.

Blake Street, Proston

Blake Street, Proston

A Small Town - Somewhere Between Here and There

I've lived in small towns for most of my life,

The city just cannot compete.

The hustle and bustle just holds no appeal,

When relaxed and serene I'm at peace.

There is one small town that I visit each month,

It's nestled amidst trees of green.

I sit in the park observing the birds,

So beautifully tranquil the scene.


Amenities are few, but people are too,

At least they provide basic needs.

Who needs traffic jams, and city nightlife,

Or fast food and take-out for feeds?

I can write if I want or catch up on a book,

Or just recline back for a snooze.

There's never a rush or a deadline to make

So I really have nothing to lose.


My little dog Ginger just goes with the flow,

No protest or complaint does she make.

She goes for a run or soaks up some sun,

Our friendship is all give, no take.

Proston is the name of the town that I speak,

On most maps it may not appear.

It's not on a highway or even a bi-way,

And is somewhere between here and there.

Shepherd Memorial (Anglican) Church of St Peter at Proston, Queensland

Shepherd Memorial (Anglican) Church of St Peter at Proston, Queensland


Proston is a small historic township supporting local residents, farms, and Lake Boondooma (popular for boating, fishing, and various water sports). It is located in South Burnett Region, Queensland, Australia.

Proston has a variety of stores including a post office, grocery store, pub/hotel (Golden Spurs), chemist, medical centre, hardware, cafe, clothing store, church, and library and according to the 2016 census had a population of 379 people.

Proston was originally part of the historic grazing station ‘Wigton.' Earliest settlement occurred in 1910, mainly by English and German migrants. Life was extremely hard for these inexperienced settlers, with lack of water a paramount handicap.

© 2019 John Hansen


John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 01, 2020:

Thank you Jim, I am glad you could relate to this poem. Cheers.

Jim Henderson from Hattiesburg, Mississippi on May 01, 2020:

I grew up in a small town as well. Thanks!

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 29, 2019:

Thank you Devika, you have to love small towns. Good to see you.

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on July 29, 2019:

i live in a small town and enjoy your side of the small town.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on July 02, 2019:

Hamilton sounds like a great place to live, Lawrence. The best of city and small town feel.

Lawrence Hebb from Hamilton, New Zealand on July 01, 2019:


Enjoyed the post.

All I can say is Hamilton is a big city (for NZ) but hasn't lost its 'cattle town' roots and has a small town feel in many ways.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 23, 2019:

Thank you for reading and commenting Peg. I am glad you are also a small town lover. Sorry to hear about the gas station being destroyed in the tornado though.

Peg Cole from North Dallas, Texas on May 23, 2019:

This sounds like my kind of town. I love the way you've captured the essence of the beauty of a less pressured existence. We live in a tiny town that has a small post office and used to have one gas station until the tornado of 2015 took it down.

Your choice of music was great, too.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 21, 2019:

Hey Brenda thanks for visiting this small town. Even my own small town is not as peaceful and idyllic as Proston. I guess there are different levels of small towns too. Cheers.

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on May 21, 2019:

Sounds like a lovely place to be. I love small towns.

Although I do live in a small town it is nothing as peaceful and serene as you have described.

Great write.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 21, 2019:

I am glad this poem gave you the chance to reminisce and think, Alyssa. It sounds like you have a wonderful community where you are.

Alyssa from Ohio on May 21, 2019:

I love your poem! It's evident that you really cherish your town. I love the idea of a small town, and would love to live in a great one like the fictional town, Bluebell from Hart of Dixie. I grew up in a small town and I worked hard to make sure that I could leave. I loved living in the city, being able to walk anywhere I needed to go. I now live in the suburbs, and I have the best neighbors. We're like our own little community, but I miss the convenience of being able to walk to the library. Sorry for rambling a bit, your poem gave me much to think about! :)

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 14, 2019:

No, Eric, I will let you wake to the sound of the birds calling at sunrise. there are no deadlines or time constraints here. Glad this brought you home.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 14, 2019:

Thank you Rasma. Small town life suits me perfectly. I visit the city to see relatives or attend special events but I prefer to spend most of my days in my quiet little town.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 14, 2019:

Manatita, small-town life is not for everyone, but even the avid city dweller needs to relax and unwind from time to time, and so a short sojourn to a country town is the ideal retreat. You can't get much more laid back than Proston. A piece on the church,,,hmm that's an idea. I will think about that. Cheers.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on May 14, 2019:

Hey John do not wake my boy and I under this tree. If we get cold we have pads and sleeping bags. We are not thirsty for we drink the stars of the Milky Way. If it gets too chilly we will snuggle and beat the cold world.

You have brought us home. Muchas Gracias.

Gypsy Rose Lee from Daytona Beach, Florida on May 14, 2019:

Really enjoyed this poetic journey to the small town. I have always had a wish to live in a typical small town where everyone knows one another.

manatita44 from london on May 14, 2019:

Good case for a retreat from time to time. I love London -- the buzz, the excitement, the flow of movement and its variety of colours. Still, you are right, as taking in a new and scenic place can be quite healing. Your Preston seems to be. Lovely!

Write a piece on the steepled photograph above. So cute!

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 11, 2019:

Thanks Genna, i’m not sure where the idea of that title came from, but I thought it was perfect. I am glad you found this small town enjoyable.

Genna East from Massachusetts, USA on May 11, 2019:

Small towns -- "somewhere between here and there..." What a great title, and the poem is a delight. I wish we had more of these towns -- where that certain charm and grace are all we need. :-)

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 10, 2019:

Glad you enjoyed this PoetikalyAnointed. Thanks for reading and commenting as always.

PoetikalyAnointed on May 10, 2019:

Aww, sweet Poem.John!

Thanks for sharing just a lil bit of you and the town of Proston. It's a beautiful thing to have found such joy, appreciation and inspiration for a wonderful place like this.

Have a good one.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 09, 2019:

Lora, many people who grew up in the city can not understand the appeal of small towns because it is something you need to experience to fully grasp. I have lived in a number of small towns (though some have grown remarkably in the years since I left..becoming boutique like towns.) I hope you do get your wish to visit many small towns across The U.S. and the world. You find out the true essence of a country by visiting small towns and out of the way places rather than the major cities and popular tourist destinations.

Lora Hollings on May 08, 2019:

I love small towns too, John. I grew up in a small, quaint town and although I don’t live in a big city now, it is still too big for me. I like the more intimate nature of a small town where it seems like it is easier to meet people and talk to them. I love the ambience of a small town and I like the words in your poem “somewhere between here and there.” I hope one day I can spend a lot of time going to many small towns not only in the U.S. but all across the world as I think they all are so unique and have many interesting stories to tell. A wonderful poem that expresses everything I find endearing about small towns.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 08, 2019:

Yes Dana, it is a more intimate atmosphere here in general. But not for everyone.

Dana Tate from LOS ANGELES on May 08, 2019:

never lived in a small town I've always been a city girl. I think I would like I,t an intimate atmosphere where your small community was more like your extended family. I think that would be perfect for me once I reached retirement age.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 08, 2019:

Thank you for sharing your own experience Lori. It must be idyllic where you are now. Yes, from what I have seen there are a lot of parts of our countries that have similarities, especially the rural areas.

Lori Colbo from United States on May 08, 2019:

I was a city dweller until my early thirties, then my husband and boys moved from southern California, a cement jungle and mall on every corner kind of environment. We decided to get out of dodge and bought a house in the country in Washington State, with forest all around us and the Puget Sound wending its way all around Western Washington. We were hooked on small-townI rural life. I am still there only a different house and a little more up the road. I can never go back to city life. I love that we all know each other.

Australia looks pretty much like America in your photos.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 07, 2019:

Thank you Linda. Yes, most of them have very interesting histories. Proston is no exception.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 07, 2019:

Yes you are right Flourish, the fact everyone knows your business takes away a degree of privacy. The suburbs is a good compromise .

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on May 07, 2019:

I've found that small and historic towns are nearly always interesting to visit. Thanks for sharing the information about Proston. I love the idea that it's "somewhere between here and there".

FlourishAnyway from USA on May 07, 2019:

Cute poem that captures small towns. I once lived in a town of about 200 and everybody knew everyone else’s business. I find the suburbs just right though. I like some anonymity.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 07, 2019:

Thanks for sharing that Mary. The town where I do live Murgon is not a large town either but is a lot bigger than Proston. I moved here to be closer to health care too.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 07, 2019:

I am sure we are tabouche. Thank you for reading this.

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on May 07, 2019:

I grew up in a small town but not as small as Preston. Sometimes, when we drive around our cottage there are packets of tiny villages and I wonder how it must be to live there. I like to again live in a small town but at my age, I am more concerned about the health care. To visit like what we do in the summer is just right.

tabouche amin from alger on May 07, 2019:

... because I write in the hustle and bustle of the city, and you write in peace

We are two different writers

thank you

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 07, 2019:

Thank you Mel. Yes, small town life is not for everyone. But you have to live in one for awhile to appreciate it. People tend to be friendlier and most get to know each other, the pace is slow and relaxed etc. this being the driest country on Earth, water supply is often a problem and directs the placement of most cities.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 07, 2019:

Thanks Linda. Preston is just one of many similar small towns in the area. Our whole country has a small population, so I guess that goes for many towns here. Glad I helped you feel you were there.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 07, 2019:

You are like me Ruby, preferring small town life. Some of my city friends say they could never live here because life is too slow and there isn’t enough to do, but it suits me just fine.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 07, 2019:

Yes, Shauna the carefree days. Lake Boondooma nearby is a popular recreational destination which probably helps keep the town alive.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 07, 2019:

Hi Elijah, it is nice that this brought back those memories of the nomad life on the road. I guess there are many similar towns around the world.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 07, 2019:

Glad this was a nice respite to start your day Eric. That’s a cool little phrase.

Mel Carriere from Snowbound and down in Northern Colorado on May 07, 2019:

"Lack of water a Paramount handicap" is the theme of every town I have ever lived in out here in the wild west, big or small.

I would love to sample small town living but my wife is a big city girl, and drags her feet against my efforts.

Lovely verses, my friend. Your simplicity of soul inspires.

Linda Lum from Washington State, USA on May 07, 2019:

Thank you for sharing this idyllic place with us John. I looked it up, and the population is less than 400 souls. Wow, in comparison my little town is a booming metropolis. I doubt I will ever visit, but with your lovely verses, I feel that I've been there.

Ruby Jean Richert from Southern Illinois on May 07, 2019:

I am listening to Small Town as I type. What a treat hearing that song again. I am a small town advocate. I avoid large cities. The closest is Evansville, In. My sister Mary lived there and of course I would visit her. She would ask me how I stood my little town and I was quick to tell her " I love it " Different strokes for different folks. As always I enjoy reading your poems. Thank you..

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on May 07, 2019:

I love your poem, John. It conjures images of a laid back life, just lolly gaggin' along with not a care in the world. Kinda like when we were kids, right?

Goodness, Proston has a lot of amenities for so few people! Is it a popular tourist destination?

Elijah A Alexander Jr from Washington DC on May 07, 2019:

As the nomad I passed through a town of less than 200, in Montana or Idaho I think, with several grocery stores, bars and service stations on the south end of a street coming from the north that formed a "T" on the highway I entered on, Proston reminded me of it. But no park was there so I got what I needed and kept kept going. However, the park reminds me of so many in so many different towns I've used for sleeping in I can't remember how many towns.

Most of the times, when I got to such park someone would always stop wanting to know what I was about as we sat observing the birds and animals at play or whatever. Sigh, the peace of such places brings the longing to still be a nomad.

Thanks for sharing it, John, I appreciate the memories of those traveling days.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on May 07, 2019:

Thank you much for that respite to start my day. You are a master. (they have a funny phrase in New England here; "You caan't git thar from ere")

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 07, 2019:

Thank you, Pamela. That is exactly how I like it :)

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on May 07, 2019:

I really enjoyed this poem as it sounds like the perfect day. You are in nature and have no deadlines. Just sitting back and enjoying your surroundings is wonderful. Nice work John!

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 07, 2019:

Hi Chitrangada, I am glad I was able to successfully describe Proston. It is a very relaxed part of the world. Thank you for your kind words.

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on May 07, 2019:

You painted a beautiful picture of this peaceful and serene place- Proston, through your well expressed poem. You are blessed to live at such a wonderful place, far from the maddening crowd, the traffic jams, the chaos and the stressful life of the metro cities.

Thanks for sharing this lovely poem.

John Hansen (author) from Queensland Australia on May 07, 2019:

Haha Clive, don't say that. There is an actual weird house there known as "The Adams Family House." It is quite freaky looking.

Clive Williams from Jamaica on May 07, 2019:

That town looks like somewhere the chainsaw massacre would love to find.

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