I do not know where I am from.
One hundred and forty-seven hours of contemplation,
yet still I am stuck in a strange situation.
Am I from the gold corn stalks
that build a wall around me?
Their weeping silk threads caught around my fingers, and
that strange fresh dirt smell that always lingers
in the depths of my sweater.
Am I from the constellations painted on my cheeks?
Their upsetting color like paint
splattered on a canvas in uneven spirals;
claiming rule over my pale round face.
Am I from John Lennon?
His weeping guitar and yellow sunshine
shining into me in sweet melodic tunes.
Am I from Atlantic, Iowa?
Home of the Trojans and simple-
minded people who have yet to accept
Am I from a hateful world where black and white
is the only thing we ever see?
Where body parts are to pave the path of one's
Am I from a nation
whose officials pledge vacation,
while those in need sit hungry on the streets?
Where the only thing they feel is the hate
they’ve been tasting?
I am from drawing patterns on the fogged-over,
emerald-tinted window glass.
From the shiny grey floor of a retro skate rink.
From the laces of black converse shoes, torn and dirty.
I am from laughing as loud as I can
at midnight, one, two thirty.
But most of all,
I am from soul.
And from the one hundred classic rock songs we always sang.
I am from youth and aspiration.
I am from smoke curling through my hair.
I am from the chalk dust,
settled rosy pink in my lungs.
"My inspiration for this piece came from George Ella Lyon's poem "Where I'm From. " I tried to paint the pictures of youth while putting a personal spin on my words by describing my own memories. I wanted to write something that demonstrated my past experiences and feelings." - Alyssa Brockob, 10th grade, Atlantic High School.