Tuesday, September 25, 2012

I Am From...

Most of my sentences start with "I". Don't yours?

I is your seat in the house for viewing your own life:

front row, center.

Today my front row, center is jumping on a band wagon.

Someone I know in real life and in the blogging world made me aware of this band wagon when she posted her self-penned, autobiographical poem called I Am From...

I Am From...is a worldwide writing prompt set in motion by George Ella Lyon. The idea is to consider the people, places, things that helped shape you and put them in poetic form. I couldn't resist the invitation to jump on this wagon, especially with the license to start so many sentences with "I". This particular I Am From... is about a young me and the story stops short of the start of my adult life. There could be volumes of my I Am From... that remain to be written. But for now,

I Am From...

I am from a living room drawer overflowing with loose snapshots and Polaroids covered with grandchildren’s fingerprints. From pink shag carpet and a gingham canopy bed to match. I am from Holly Hobbie, Donny Osmond, Pooh Bear and Stretch Armstrong.

I am from the baby of the family, three big brothers, Boy Scout Camp, summer swim team and never being old enough to ride my bike to Colonel’s Market. I am from honeysuckle and tire swings. From fear of the basement, the pump house and the upstairs alone.

I am from red hair, glasses and late blooming. I am from carpenter’s dreams.

I am from vacation bible school at the big church in town. I am from memorized verses and all the Books and a prize trip to Opryland. I am from organized religion, dismantled for me to see what’s underneath the pulpit and the dogma. I am from God is, underneath it all.

I am from the woodwinds, a reed softening in my mouth, right thumb calloused by a pad worn thin.

I am from three grandparents I never really knew and one who was all a grandmother ought to be. I am from wagon wheel, canasta, and hearts, find the thimble, and Apples of Gold. I am from homemade vegetable soup where potatoes might be turnips. I am from no aunts, no uncles, no first cousins, from the extended family that stopped short.

I am from having it all, moved through where did it all go and arrived at we didn’t really need it anyway.

I am from silly songs, family jokes, spoons magically hanging from noses and everybody talking at once. And from laughter too.

I am from parents volunteering, chaperoning, speaking out at meetings, calling teachers and superintendents, chairing committees and running PTAs.

I am from the curves and dips of the old road to Townsend. I am from the rope swing and Body on Tap rinsed clean in Great Smoky mountain river water. I am from Marlboro smoke twirling out the window of my best friend’s Triumph rolling home back down the old road.

I am from parents who held on to the rails and each other during the inevitable rocky parts of married family life. I am from work it out until it can’t be worked out. I am from commitment, loyalty, forgiveness. I am from a love so deep and insistent that it is too overwhelming to explain.

I am from these things I wouldn't change.

So where are you from?


  1. Fabulous!! Especially fun to read when you get the references. I'll email you daughter2's...it's super sweet.

  2. Wow! This has got to be one of my most favorite posts EVER!!! You did such a great job!

    1. Thank you Mary! I really appreciate that. So much!

  3. Great Stuff and Great Writing! Love the photos!! -Marilyn L.

  4. Thanks Peach. Missing where I'm from especially when the air gets crisp.


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