I am from mud pies,
from old stone walls and leaf-buried granite boulders.
From kickball and the tire swing
and skates still skittering on swamp ice
deep in the woods at twilight.
I’m from Gorky’s Mother and Goya: Frescos
bookshelves spanning the walls.
Sam, Bangs and Moonshine and The Railway Children
on Mom’s lap, read aloud.
I’m from a metallurgist and a sculptor
From Bengal, and Cambridge, and the Town of Harvard.
I’m from fine public schools, conserved land, and history.
From lay-offs, high taxes, and rusting chassis.
I’m from shattered plates, gravel spitting, and dust motes swirling down.
I’m from the end of the driveway,
Formica, canvas cots, and Rice-a-Roni
I’m from If-I’d-been-better, and Maybe-they’ll-get-back-together, from Tell-your-mother, Tell-your-father, and
I’m from Miss Johnson’s first grade, Mrs. Turner’s fourth,
from Oberlin College
Shakespeare, Folklore, and Geology.
I’m from Columbia University, where I learned to write poems.
I am from teachers who welcomed me
into a thinking community.

CC BY-SA 4.0 Swinging from Tire Swings by Kiran is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

1 Comment
  1. Linda Christensen 3 weeks ago

    I love your poem, Kiran

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Youth Voices is organized by teachers at local sites of the National Writing Project and in partnership with Educator Innovator.

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