Where I'm From

After reading Repressed Librarian's latest, absolutely lovely and poetic post, I couldn't resist her invite to try out a meme/writing exercise on George Ella Lyons' poem "Where I'm From." The rules, the original poem, examples, and even a template to follow can be found here.

I am from moving boxes,
from U Haul packing tape and wooden pallets.

I am from a purple-gingham canopy bed,
with tucked frills and flowing ruffles.
(Stuffed animals, worn to bare patches, aloft on hospital corners.)

I am from the spring lilac, the autumn sugar maple,
whose fiery leaves twirled at the steps of every new school.

I am from Christmas pillowcases, and freckled sunburns,
from Theobald and O'Cadhain and Teflon (the superdog).

I am from the argue-for-fun and talk-above-one-anothers.
From "Would you like something else to eat?"
and "Attention K-mart shoppers".

I am from "On Angels Wings," and "Ave Maria,"
and my great-grandmother's red crystalline rosary beads.

I'm from a state line
(two states identical yet opposed in a rural blur),
Tourtière, Guinness Ale, and peanut-butter fudge
that grows back in the night.

From the finger my father lost to the paper mill
(that saved him from Vietnam),
and the body of my mother, and her mother, and her mother before.

I am from the paper box fused with tattered hair ribbons,
resting gently in my grandmother's cedar chest,
underneath the delicate lace of my baptismal gown.
Memories entrusted to me, the only grandchild;
born over the river: that precious state line,
from where I truly call home.

Updated: For those who actually care to read English!


Repressed Librarian said...

This was really lovely. Thanks for sharing!

post-doc said...

Wow. I'm really impressed by the gorgeous writing this post inspires. It was absolutely lovely.

MapleMama said...

RL and p-d: Thanks for your kind comments. It was a bit of a challenge to stay true to the poem/template. Sometimes my responses came out a little odd and dry, like filling in a mad-lib, but with a little review, it was really quite fun!