CHALLENGE: Write your own adaptation of this poem as a character from something we’ve read this year (or from a character’s perspective from an SSR book).
I am from poverty,
from politeness and pity.
I am from the nickels for ice-cream.
they felt like secrets.)
I am from the chipped slop jars,
the red geraniums
whose beauty I cultivated
as if they could save me.
I am from Ewells and Maycomb,
from whiskey and racism.
I am from the you-try-and-make-mes
I’m from the testimony on the stand
with my father looking on
and not answering the lawyer’s questions.
I’m from Bob and Burris’ Branch,
relief checks and crawling cooties.
From the chiffarobe Tom Robinson
busted to help me out
the lies I told to avoid another beating.
In the courtroom was a jury
ignoring the truth
a verdict of guilty
to haunt me and kill him.
I am from the dumpster —
trash strewn in the front yard —
no hope to be found.
I would LOVE to work with you on this poem – let me know if you are interested and we can meet in a google doc. I hope someone is up for the challenge.
adapted from George Ella Lyon’s poem “Where I’m From”