I’m From…by Robynn and Adelaide
Adelaide is a sophomore in high school. She’s in grade 10. The Language Arts teacher wanted them to write a poem introducing themselves to her and to the class. It was a simple assignment. Five short stanzas. Two lines each. Begin each stanza with, “I’m from…”. Apparently the teacher’s included lines like, “I’m from the yellow kitchen, blue popsicles and red posies. I’m from the white house, the fenced yard, the barking beagle”.
It’s a good assignment.
Unless where you’re from is convoluted. Unless you’ve inherited some confusion on that particular subject. Unless it’s too long of a story to be captured neatly in five short stanzas.
And then it’s not such a great assignment.
Adelaide cranked out a rough draft. The teacher read it over Adelaide’s shoulder. She cautioned her on being too vague. It wasn’t specific enough. It didn’t describe where Adelaide was from. She should give it another go.
Over the weekend, sprawled on her bedroom floor, Adelaide read her first draft out loud. I loved it. Tears sprang to my eyes. My young daughter had captured the ambiguities of a globally scattered childhood succinctly. She discerned her own angst. She understood mine too.
We talked about what she should do. I didn’t want her to make any changes and yet she needed to meet her teacher’s expectations. Eventually she tweaked it some. But it was her original first draft that I connected with.
I’m from the wide airplane wings
Swooping me up and setting me down.
I’m from the navy blue passport
Filled with endless destinations.
I’m from the suitcases not always full
Yet always tucked away in the corner.
I’m from the experiences, the people, the places
From North America to Europe to Asia.
I’m from never knowing where I’m from
But always feeling at home.
Now it’s your turn – using the same format, where are you from? And many thanks to the beautiful Adelaide for starting the conversation.
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Picture Credit: http://pixabay.com/en/united-states-usa-passport-blue-315266/ and word art by Mgardner