I am from tall oak trees, from pine trees that you could climb to the very top,
from puddle splashing and pink Huffy bikes,
summer meals of fall apart hamburgers and chocolate milkshakes.
I am from the old yellow farmhouse with creaky wood floors,
where people were born and probably died.
I am from the morning glories and bright orange tiger lillies growing in the ditch.
I am from the white elephant exchanges at Christmas and strong-willed women
with fiery red hair, from Winifred and Viola, who changed her name to Nancy.
I am from the little girl who wishes she would have told her how beautiful Viola was.
I am from the nature lovers and the passionate about politics, the sometimes struggling to make ends meet.
From the giants stomping to cause thunder and the place where white bread isn't allowed because the dough sticks to your stomach.
I am from the church of outdoors, the awe of the world around you. I am from the church of big breakfasts on Sunday mornings,
from the church of an awareness of something bigger than us,
from the church of being allowed to choose.
I'm from the very far northwest corner of this state, where the accents are more Chicago than Midwest. I'm from peanut butter, banana, and bacon sandwiches, from tostadas with freshly fried shells, refried beans simmering on the stove all day long, from garden fresh, sun-ripened tomatoes.
I am from wood stoves in the winter, skinned knees, dirty bare feet stained purple from the mulberry tree, brown skin and freckles in the summer. I am from the dinner table that always had room for one more, tangled hair, green milk on St Patrick's Day, Girl Scout camp, and burnt marshmallows.
I am from love.
Steph recently shared this meme based on this poem. As an English teacher, I love this and can't wait to teach it to my students.