Wednesday, July 06, 2011

I am from

I am from peanut butter, from Nilla Wafers and powdered milk.

I am from the southern part of the South, dripping with humidity and hypocrisy, balancing redemption and restitution, forever pushing people away all while calling them to come back home.

I am from the chaise lounge in the forked branches, the climbable magnolia.

I am from Sunday dinners and slow talking, from a line of Tom's and Henry's and Suttle's without being it at all.

I am from love felt deeply, loud laughter, fiery anger, long grudges, and stubborn pride.

I am from how you get to Hell and how you get to Heaven.

I am from Presbyterians, serious and regimented. I am from the Book of Order. I am from committees, liturgy, and sacraments. From preachers and elders. From Sunday School teachers. I am from tight knit youth groups where friendships remain even after time unraveled the rest.

I am from Mississippi. I am from buttermilk biscuits and pound cake. BBQ ribs and vegetables fresh from the garden that grew in town behind my grandparents' house. From the busy road, you could catch a glimpse of country in a part of the city that had been so very developed. I am from the country stuck within the city.

I am from boxes stuffed with photographs, unordered and smudged. From CD's I won't listen to anymore. From songs I won't sing again.

I am from five sets of china and antiques battling for space within my home. I am from a wedding dress boxed up and passed down, a wedding dress worn and then forgotten, and a wedding dress still new, hanging clean in the bag, overlooked for eloping. I am from dress gloves and costume jewelry that I will never wear, but yet never let go.

I am from a pipe that stills smells a little like my grandfather. I know this because I still pull it out of the drawer and expectantly smell it every now and then. I am from cardigan sweaters that used to warm my Daddy when he stayed so very cold all of the time.

I am from joy and pain. Pride and shame. I am from all of this and so much more.


Jennifer at Playgroups Are No Place for Children was the first place I saw this. Then today, Maggie at Magpie Musings wrote one as well. They are both beautiful writers, and I hesitated to join in - but the template (from the Campbell Folk School in North Carolina) is lovely and the results all so different. Schmutzie has also done it and is making a link-up. Come join in.