Where I Come From by Caitlin Smith

This is certainly meant to be spoken, because that’s how I write, but I hope you guys will enjoy this anyway. 

I come from walls
lined with photographs,
people who carry the past
and make futures
out of 50 hour work weeks
and prayers.
I’m from my mom
who works to buy the things
we need,
wearing the same shoes
for as long as anybody
can remember.
And dad-
proof that it doesn’t matter
where you come from
so long as you know where to go,
and you never
stop walking.
I’m from families so big
and loud
that there’s no room
for oxygen –
only fights and hugs
and enough love
to hold everything together
even if it’s all gone
I’m from journals
and story-telling;
living a thousand lives
through words
that aren’t mine,
but could be,
that shape me
and destroy me
until I find who I am
in the ashes
of banned books
and hidden paperbacks.
The value of things
is all in what you see. 
I’m from, “I love you
“to the moon and back,”
cause the moon never changes
no matter how many miles
or bright lights
you put between you;
it’s a messenger
that never fails to connect two hearts
if they only remember
to look up
once in a while.
I’m from lightsaber duels in the front yard,
dogs trying to pick sides,
mom reading,
always ready to say,
“that’s enough,”
when things get too rowdy;
dad saying, “Let ‘em go”
cause he knows
that kids just need
to be kids
or they’ll never grow
into adults,
and besides,
the game is on.
I’m from bruises and
broken bones –
scars that testify of
all the things I’ve lost.
Sometimes the ones on my heart
feel like they’re tattooed on my sleeve
for the world to see,
but I’m from bad experiences
that have made me
so I say, “let them look,”
maybe they’ll learn from
my mistakes and teach me
something with their own.
Sharing is caring
after all.
I’m from a no secrets
household –
if you don’t tell it’s
lying by omission,
so we’re all good
at pretending
that there are no
even when they’re
following us
down the hall.
I’m from the land of luxury,
red white and blue
and it’s true –
I love my country,
or because,
it’s flawed
but always trying
to change;
just like me.
I’m from heartbreak
and bad decisions;
live and learn
or die trying;
life’s what you make it
but if you don’t watch your back
it’s bound to break it.
I’m from great friends
and good times,
non stop laughter and
shoulders to cry on;
when things are darkest
they know where
the light switch
I’m from losses that
led to gains,
and ample opportunities
that led to nothing
but quicksand –
rolling with the punches
is the name
of the game
we call
Hope you enjoyed it! 

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