What I Am
I am from thick ankles and steady determination. Stubborn Dutchmen, prairie dirt, waving wheat fields, night sounds that carried me away. Inkwells and Our Miss Brooks, Christmas tree tinsel that hurt your fillings when you chewed it, chicken pox and neighbors’ dogs, tiny bunnies rescued from furrows, my sister’s old prom dresses in a trunk in the upstairs hall. I am cherry trees and cherries for pitting. Pitched tents and new friends, prayer and questions, spelling bees and math, Annie-I-Over and hollyhocks. Sunday rollerskating on the basketball court. Ten-cent movies and Bit-o-Honeys, ditch ’em and long summer nights. An attic never opened, a basement too frequently explored, dust of Sunday explorations down long dirt roads. Small prairie towns and flights of fancy. Pretending my real self, while trying to be from where I was. Caught in a net with scissors. Cutting my way out. Taking any road elsewhere. A highway, a plane, a ship, an escape, a looking for, a finding, a losing, a continual origin story of my own making. Full breaths. Sinking in. Making memories. Remembering memories made for me. I am. I am becoming. What I was I still am. Self changing self and sinking back into self.
The day 11 NaPoWriMo prompt is: to write a poem of origin. Where are you from? Not just geographically, but emotionally, physically, spiritually? Maybe you are from Vikings and the sea and diet coke and angry gulls in parking lots. Maybe you are from gentle hills and angry mothers and dust disappearing down an unpaved road. And having come from there, where are you now?