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Critical Acclaim



Jon Potter, The Brattleboro Reformer

“With its artful musical mix of jazz, rock, folk, funk, blues, reggae, soul, bossa and more, and its equally easy lyrical turns from serious to sublime, the new CD Come Over does pose problems-at least for people who try to categorize it.Actually, if there’s one bin the CD doesn’t belong in, its the one marked “dysfunctional.”Come Over is a CD on which all the pieces fit; one whose diverse songs tell an engaging, coherent story. It’s a seasoned, soulful work with depth and real feeling to go with strong chops.
It is emotionally rich without being contrived; grown up and serious but still with time to dream and dance. It’s consistent right down to the cover – Joan Peters’ painting of two coffee mugs side by side speaks of a warm invitation for two friends to spend some time together.”


Jesse Kornbluth,

“Are You Ready for the Country? Before many of you were born, Western Massachusetts was dotted with communes founded by city kids who’d decided that back-to-the-land was the best idea going. At that moment, farming seemed like a reasonable use for my English Lit degree, so I grabbed a chilly bedroom overlooking the back 40. Turns out I like central heat and a favorable male/female ratio, so I moved on. Patty Carpenter and her old man — I think that’s what I’m supposed to call my pal Chuck Light — stayed. And she’s spent decades making music about her life. Now, writing with Verandah Porche (no, not a typo), she’s released a 12-song CD that’s wood smoke and open fields, long dinners with friends and cold mornings by mountain streams. Feel free to Come Over — and to be surprised: Patty’s a grown-up pro who just happens to live far from the bright lights.”


“They also had a stage set up and a dynamite group, the Dysfunctional Family Jazz Band, was putting on one heck of a show. And, they really were all family members. Whether they were truly dysfunctional, I do not know. One thing for sure, you don’t have to polish your saxophone for it to sound good.”


Maxine Chernoff, The Turning, Among the Names, World: Poems 1991-2001; Japan; Evolution of the Bridge: Selected Prose Poems, and others.

Neither the beauty nor the brokenness of the world escapes Verandah Porche's grasp in her newest collection, Sudden Eden.   The orchard and the neighbor's homely sayings share equally with time and eternity.  She is a wise poet who knows her land and its neighbors and the deeper truths of living a rural life in which  "Late
fruit/keeps its edge as frost/fleeces the pasture."  These poems are about the investments one makes in life, in its loves and causes, its earth and trees, its human community.


Yvonne Daley

Verandah Porche and Patty Carpenter are a magical duo of music and words. At the Green Mountain Writers Conference, year after year, participants in their popular workshops have created songs that fit the group’s make-up, songs with lasting significance. Sometimes participants write the blues; other times jazz, bringing not just their voices but also their music and instrumentation to the exercises. The songs that come out of these sessions are always insightful, representative, catchy and fun. Our conference song, “Meet Me on the Mountain Top” was created in a workshop five years ago. It, along with so many others over the years, are keepers, easily memorized gems that gather the spirit of the group and remain as reminders of the creativity that comes from playing together with language, music, group energy and creativity.


Liz Inness-Brown

Her voice was music to my ears, the creaky yet melodious voice of wisdom and experience, piquant with humor and quirky and brilliant insights. Whether her topic was joy or pain, she wrote with sheer exuberance, with inventiveness and precision but most of all a love of language and the way words can reveal their secret meanings, if you only look and listen closely enough. She is a poet who reveals the truth behind the idea that poetry is music, and music poetry.


David Budbill, Happy Life, While We’ve Still Got Feet, Moment to Moment: Poems of a Mountain Recluse; Judevine; From Down to the Village, and others.

Out of her densely pack words and striking images--"two dotted U’s" are breasts, "Chanterelle: a trill of thrush made edible&", “Ten below/the trees play air/guitar—“ comes the story of her life, past generations back Russia, her mother, father, the seasons, homesteading, children, the life of a working poet, other people's
stories, lives, politics--joy and sorrow. It's all here.

These are poems--both tough and tender and in many forms--of family, reminiscence: in sum an autobiography of a life well lived, and all of it totally engaging, important and well worth anyone's time.


Planned Parenthood of Northern New England

"I just don't know a way more beautiful to celebrate our birthday, aknowledge our staff, our leaders, our rights, with such passion and hope. Bless you for what you see and then say!"


Claire Oglesby, retired techer - honored in "The World of Clair's Classroom," a film by Marlboro Productions

"Verandah shares her pleasure with classes. She presents complex ideas so that students can grasp them. She honors each individual effort. She bonds with teachers and enhances their skills. I wish every child could work with her."

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