Monday, December 12, 2011

Where I'm From...

This post was intially written a few months ago, but I feel like it fits this week's listicle perfectly. Not the traditional listicle format, but perfect none the less.

A few months ago, I stumbled upon the template to the Where I'm From writing exercise modeled after the poem by George Ella Lyon on another blogger's site. I initally found it on The Girl Behind in June of this year. Her eloquence, created such  a vivid picture of one's childhood that I was floored. Immediately I too copied the template, with the intention of filling my own words, my own life on those empty lines.
But then, it hit me.
That feeling that the task was too large. The task of finding the "right" words seemed overwhelming.
So I clicked, save and there the template sat.
Waiting for my words.
Days turned to weeks which turned to months and then it happened.
Imagine my surprise when I discovered the template listed amongst this week's prompts over at Mama Kat. I debated, should I finish? (really should I start?)
Reading Galit's version over at These Little Waves gave me that last push I needed.

Where I'm From 

I am from a town raised from steel, from Louisville Slugger and Heinz ketchup.

I am from the repetition of a suburban development.  Black mailbox, Black driveway, freshly mowed grass.

I am from the feisty dogwood tree sharing her spring blooms, the sound of the crickets breaking the nightly silence.

I am from Christmas Eve Mass and overindulgence, from Mom-Moms. and Pop-Pops and extended family too.

I am from the loud voices overtaking the room and the whispers found in it's corners.

From "Imagine if you applied yourself." and "Don't end up like....".

I am from the pew in the middle row. The promise of eternal life, and the Host every Sunday. From education about faith to shared breakfast after. From crowded manger scenes, to washing of the feet. From Amen and I believe.

I’m from small towns in Poland, Slovakia, and Ireland, overly buttered piergoies and tomato sauced topped stuffed cabbage.

From the farm my great grandfather managed, the rides on the back of the tractor down the dusty dirt road and the little boy who learned to ride a bicycle only after riding away on the one he had stolen.

I am from framed photos on the wall and matted in plastic lined albums. I am from little, few family heirlooms or mementos of monetary value. Instead, people filling the confines of a home. Rooms overtaken with life.
Family the core, the center, the most important.

I must add in non-poetic verse.
I am from the land of the Blob.
Yes, this Blob.
This movie was filmed here, and our local theater hosts a Blob Fest yearly.


  1. I felt the same way you did when Mama Kat first posted the template earlier this week and then I started writing... You did a wonderful job with yours and I had to giggle at the overly 'buttered perogies' because that was our house, too :)

  2. This is gorgeous - I'm so pleased that you finally got around to it (and doesn't it feel lovely to write?!).

  3. <3 love each and every word of this Jac!!!!!!

  4. I love how this shows the small details of your childhood and then how you stretched it across time to generations back around the world. Such wonderful imagery!!

  5. "I am from the repetition of a suburban development. Black mailbox, Black driveway, freshly mowed grass." Really good use of imagery here. It really conjures it in my mind.

    Good job with this post. I think this prompt is my all time favorite.

  6. I am glad you completed it. You paint the picture of a wonderful family history and connections. I love the message that it isn't the where but the who that matters with family.

  7. The time and thought put into this shows. Your words pulled me into your history as I read and I surfaced wishing I could go back with you to the overly buttered perogies and the repetition of suburban development.

  8. You have me craving pierogies! Buttered and greasy. Yum.

  9. Awesome job, Jackie!!! I found this to be kind of hard to do too. It took me quite a while to write it. I'm glad you finished yours :)

  10. I've loved these posts, but I find myself liking the quotes the most. "Imagine if you applied yourself." I always wonder what our grandkids will remember us saying; what "annoying" little phrase they will pluck out of their history and write about one day. :-)

  11. I did this prompt too, and I too felt daunted by it at first. My dad helped me get it started and that helped a lot.

    Nice job!

  12. I remembr reading it back in September. Why did I not comment? Seems I don't comment often :) glad you linked this, I love it even more defacing it an noticing the little details! I never knew you and Heinz are from the same town :)

  13. My spell check hates me! What on earth is defacing?!?!?! I meant second time around. I think. No idea buy I just love this post, the way it is written and the story of you it tells.

  14. perfect for this week's list! I just loved doing this template myself. I made some of my family cry when they read it. It such an amazing feeling to have people react with such emotion to where you are from.

  15. Stasha, I must admit, Heinz is from Pittsburgh however my father is addicted to it, thus Heinz ketchup is a staple in our house!

  16. This was a wonderful post, and one of my favorites from the Listicles so far.

  17. I love what you did with this post. I saw the template too on Mama Kat's but I was also too overwhelmed with finding the right words.

  18. I love this! What you described certainly sounds like a "home"town.

  19. Great post! You did a wonderful job!

  20. It sounds fascinating and even more so the Blob fest! :)


Let me know what you think.