I’m from east Oakland born and raised

where it’s a miracle if you make it out

at the age of 18.

I’m from a place where women struggle to know their worth so

the only way for them to get recognize it by being ”popular” or

even worse, instead why not buss up and prove everyone who

looks down on you.

I’m from where our young men are dying easily on the streets

being put in a body bag, while it’s either gang banging or just

another kid getting shot over ”gun violence” and we are asking why this

happens, asking for justice and they acting like nothing happened.

I’m from where I speak my mind and wear my heart on my sleeve

and the ”truth hurts” and all I know I got to make it on my own

no remorse because nowadays it seems like they want you to

succeed but on the inside they wanting to see you fail but I know

regardless I got to do me.

I’m from East Oakland where all you see is creativeness and

beautiful people where the younstas go hyphy anytime we

listen to e-40, too short, or even mac dre and there is

no other city like East Oakland.

 

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CC BY-SA 4.0 Like No Other City by Tamara is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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7 Comments
  1. Justin 9 months ago

    Dear Tamara
    I am interested with you poem because it talks about a place close to your heart. It give a description of the streets that you were raised on and how they might seem to other people. But to you they seem to feel warm and welcoming. One thing that stands out for me is “ I am from East Oakland where all you see is creativeness and beautiful people…” I think this is interesting because throughout most of the parts of the poem you talk about the bad parts of this city. However you do not forget to include the good parts that might harder to see to an outsider of the city. In my class, we watched Chimamanda Adiche’s “The Danger of a Single Story.” Your post reminded me off this quote from her speech ,“What struck me was this: She had felt sorry for me even before she saw me. Her default position toward me, as an African, was a kind of patronizing, well meaning pity. My roommate had a single story of Africa: a single story of catastrophe…” I thought this quote meant that if you hear one story of a thing a lot you start to view that thing the way they describe it and this connected to the poem because you started off telling a bad story. A story about a violent place but you also told the good side of the story no restring peoples view to a bad one. Thanks for your project .I look forward to seeing what you write next because it was so interesting. It was a beautiful poem about a place many might think is bad. To you though it is home welcoming and creative.

  2. Arlene 9 months ago

    Dear Tamara,
    I am intrigued by your poem because I can relate to it. I live near a street where there is a lot of shootings. And on the news it would show the people who got shot were just kids. Some 18 or sometimes younger. One thing that stands out to me is ¨ all i know i got to make it on my own¨. I think this is interesting because i think that’s sort of the mentality we´re all starting to have. We think that we´re all alone so the only person we can count on is yourself. In my class, we watched Chimamanda Adiches ¨the Danger of a Single Story¨. Your pose reminded me of his quote from her speech: ¨ all of these stories make me who i am. But to insist on only the negative stories is to flatten my experience and to overlook the many other stories that formed me.¨ I thought that this quote means that you can’t just look at the bad things that have happened. You have to also look at the good moments in life for all of them together are what make you who you are and connected to your poem because the place where youŕe from isn’t just about gun violence it’s also a place of creativity and ¨beautiful people¨. Thanks for your project. I look forward to seeing what your write next because I liked the way you worded it. And I connected to it.

  3. Ebenezer 9 months ago

    Dear Tamara,

    I am intrigued by how you described Oakland, you basically gave me a vivid and raw visual on how living in Oakland is like. I am satisfied with your poem because not many people have the audacity to give this type of feedback on where they are from. A lot of people would of sugar coated this poem, and only talk about the positives of the community but you kept it real. One thing you said that stands out to me is “I’m from where our young men are dying easily on the streets”. I find this interesting because i am from a similar situation just like that. In my class we watched Chimamanda Adiche’s “The danger of a single story”. Your post reminded me of this quote from her speech “All of these stories make me who I am. But to insist on only these negative stories is to flatten my experience and to overlook the many other stories that formed me. The single story creates stereotypes, and the problem with stereotypes is not that they are untrue , but they are incomplete. They make one story become the only story”. I thought this quote meant that you should’t stereotype any one or just assume they did not have the same experiences like you just because they are from somewhere else. This related to your poem because i’m sure people would probably judge you and assume that you are a certain type of way just because you are from Oakland. Thanks for your project. I look forward to seeing what you write next because this poem is really touching and i would like to continue to read your story.

  4. Jade 9 months ago

    Dear Tamara,

    I am interested in your poem because it’s the same here in Philadelphia. Everyday you never know who next to go. Always fearing that you might lose your brother or your sister is the worst part of the day.

    One thing you said that stands out for me is: “where it’s a miracle if you make it out at the age of 18.” I think this is sad because here in philly we have one of the highest homicide rates. Families have to watch the police not even care and mothers have to bury their children.

    In my class, we watched Chimamanda Adiche’s “The Danger of a Single Story.” Your post reminded me of this quote from her speech: “The single story creates stereotypes, and the problem with
    stereotypes is not that they are untrue, but that they are incomplete.” I thought that this quote meant that these stereotypes people make up about us are not just stereotypes, they are us but they are not fully us. And I feel as though this connected to your poem because you told us about the bad things that have happened in your city. Even though there are bad things that happen the good things will outweigh the bad. The bad is just what helps create your city but, it isn’t what defines your city.

    Thanks for your project. I look forward to seeing what you write next because I would like to see you write about the good things that happen. Also I want to see you write about why Oakland is like that.

  5. Nathan 2 years ago

    This is a really interesting poem to me. I am from a different part of the country where issues like these aren’t as big of a concern, so it is really intriguing and eye opening to hear about problems in other parts of the U.S. I also like E-40.

  6. Kamron 2 years ago

    Dear Tamara
    I am showing my concern because I find this related to me because I was born and raised there
    One reason I say I agree with them is that some people don’t live to make it to 18 because of the gun violence in Oakland because of them being innocent bystanders getting shot by people that was trying to kill someone else child .
    Your post remind me of one my friends cousin that died a day after he turn 18 and he was a innocent bystander wait for his for his friend to come outside the house
    Thanks for your writing. I look forward to seeing what you write next, because the article you wrote was very interesting and relate to my world

    • Author
      Tamara 2 years ago

      thank you kamron i appreciate that

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