Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Where are you from?  

I wrote last week about how much I enjoy hearing people's love stories. Another thing I enjoy is Where I'm From poetry that people send me. I discovered the Where I'm From project shortly after I began blogging back in 2003. At the site Fragments From Floyd, Fred First wrote a post singing the praises of Appalachian poet George Ella Lyons and her poem Where I'm From. The poem is a beautiful reflection on the experiences and memories that shape us all. Fred borrowed an idea from somewhere and offered up a template to help poets and non-poets alike create similar poems specific to their own lives. Though I'm not a poet by any means, the project appealed to me enough to write my own poem. Ever since then, several readers have sent me their own Where I'm From poems, and every one is a masterpiece in its own right. I have posted them all under the where we're from link in the right-hand sidebar.

I recently received another poem, and I felt it was the perfect opportunity to draw attention to this project. I also think this is a great tool to stimulate conversation between spouses. If you write a poem about where you're from, send it to me and I will include it in the collection. For now, read about Where Sarah's From, check out the other poems, and see just how fun and cool this can be.

Where Sarah's From

I am from shag carpet, from My Little Ponies, Dr. Who and a scratched window seat.

I am from the brown house by the river, far from the road.

I am from the old birch trees, the daffodils, and kaleidoscopic pansies.

I am from anxiety and needless fear.

I am from Christmas Eve tree-trimming parties and defensive stubbornness, from David and Ruth-called-Kim.

I'm from "You're a California Girl and don't you forget it" and "Life isn't working the way the instruction manual said it would."

I am from conversion from atheism to Catholicism, via my parents.

I'm from San Rafael and Northwestern European cross-breeding, from pasta with pesto and Black Magic Cake and using the good silver every day.

From home-schooling and home-cooking, and weeding the garden with the sun hot on my back.

I am from "Sam the Gazebo" and other stories my mother invented and told to me.

I am from overcast skies, drizzle, and soul-chilling dampness.  I'm from heating the house with a woodstove.

I am from my mother's playfulness and my father's determination.
I am from flowering in college; I am from two and a half years in Alaska encompassing great beauty and great pain.

I am from the spreading peace and joy of my marriage to my husband.