A good one for #ThrowbackThursday...
My "I Am From" Poem.
Composed on my last birthday.
Originally shared as a note on Facebook, 8/30/13.
Inspired by readings from Ms. Kim Patrick's Young Writers' Open Mic, and dedicated to all the people who have made me into who I am...
I am from golden days spent wiggling toes in sun baked sand, and the taste of salt that lingers after reluctantly saying farewell to the sparkling waves, dragging boogie boards and plastic buckets the half mile trek away from the beckoning Atlantic.
I am from Daddy's big laugh as he thrust me high above his head to do Super Girl, flashes of pine trees whirling by above us.
I am from "If I wanted to build my house in a field, I would have built it in a field!" accompanied by a satisfied nod when Mommom complained to him about those pines.
I am from the comfort of cherry flavored tobacco, snuggled up in my Poppop's generous lap--the warmest, safest place to lay one's head at Mommom's house.
I am from "Welcome to the Family of the People Who Love the Lord" sung by warbling, honest voices in the tiny Baptist church on Rt. 54, and the tears that stung as a teenager as I tried to form those words, not understanding why I cried.
I am from "If you want to be baptized, you have to be nicer to your brother."
I am from elaborate hand-stitched Halloween costumes and my mother's smiles, crispy bacon and hot scrapple on a Saturday morning, cartoons blaring in the background from one of the three lonely channels the satellite provided.
I am from Friday nights under the lights and round-off, toe touch, cheer! Green and Gold and the swelling victorious instruments blasting out "Da-da-da-da-da, hey!" beneath starry October skies.
I am from the love of my life staring at me in a high school chorus class, tossing my music on the floor or playfully touching my side, my shoulder.... tingles that brought back smiles hours and years later.
I am from dreams of getting off the Eastern Shore, palm trees of North Florida swaying under cloudless blue skies and college life with my best friend, who went 800 miles away with me after forming a playground friendship by the sliding boards in second grade. I am from going back to where you came from, and so is she.
I am from a bustling, vibrant, welcoming church, filled with thousands of people who love Jesus and each other. A church that grows and changes and laughs, while staying true to the scriptures.
I am from "Thank You," as my love's beautiful brown eyes fall on me in the hospital bed, our little Rose cradled contently in his arms.
I am from "She won't look like this when we see her again," and his hand on my shoulder as we hold our youngest in the oh-so-soft blanket--the only thing I will ever buy for her.
I am from never look back, or they'll see you as weak, and the thudding of sneakers on pavement as my eyes search for the finish line.
I am from rejection after rejection, sprinkled with glimmers of hope from agents who praise my writing ability, gently admitting my novel is not quite right for them.
I am from all eyes on me at open mics, and laughter and tears and comments that urge me to sit down and begin typing again.
I am from Dr. Puma's barely legible "I expect to see your name in print some day" scrawled across the bottom of my final memoir turned in for Non-fiction class.
I am from believing.