Tuesday, October 10, 2006

where I'm from

I am from the glider

on my grandmother's side porch,
Coca-Cola in six ounce green glass bottles,
cornbread and sweet tea.

I am from the mountains, flatlands,

from the land of cotton,
peaches and apples,
beans and taters.

I am from the dogwood trees along the driveway,

wild huckleberries and blackberries,
from the washboard chatter
and dust of a gravel road.

I am from patchwork quilts and crocheted afghans,

from the Hanies and the Austins,
Aunt Betty's cinnamon rolls and Jessilee's cakes.

I am from soldiers,

working folks, farmers, mechanics,
from Lava soap, sawdust,
and silver curlicues under the workbench.

From the city house

bought with farm butter and egg money,
from parachutes at Fort Benning,
and parades on Peachtree Street.

I am from Army housing,

foreign wars, motorpools, sea rations,
leaning tower of Pisa,
camping in the Alps.

I am from liberal Methodists,

dinner on the grounds, homecoming,
sprinkling instead of dunking,
family reunions and family funerals.

I am from fried chicken and apple pie,

from gathering eggs, making pickles, and churning butter.
I am a Daydream Believer
and Gone With the Wind.

I am from my grandfather's shaving brush

in the ceramic cup on the bathroom sink,
from filling the coal scuttle,
gathering the firewood,
sewing my finger.

I am from Barbie dolls, Chatty Cathy,

the clickety-clack of playing cards on bike spokes,
jigsaw puzzles and rope swings.

I am from shelling pecans picked up off the ground,

fresh sweet milk with cream on top,
cookbooks, iron skillets,
and soup mix on the ceiling.

I am from handmade prom dresses and handmade houses,

chenille bedspreads, Braves on the radio,
picking plums on the creek bank,
outhouses, verandas.

I am from bellbottom blue jeans and crocheted vests,

sock hops, pep rallies, Tastee Freeze,
LPs and 45s,
Bonanza and Laugh-In.

I am from all of these moments

and places in time and more
rolled into one,
just a Southern country girl at heart.

~Susan Tidwell 2006

~create your own 'where I'm from'