Thursday, March 16, 2006

Where I'm From

I haven’t written in a long while for whatever reason. But my loving Sis has been hounding me to try my hand once again, in fact, she sent me a link to Cowtown Pattie’s post “Where I am From”. It intrigued me, made me think, remember, and dream.
Here it is.
Where I’m From
I am from winding dirt roads, dusty and hot on little bare feet in the blazing heat of a summer day, that lazily meandering across the rural country side. I am from the heavenly aroma of wild sweet honeysuckle vines, twisted and clinging to rusted and sagging barbwire fences, a profusion of yellow and white blossoms and lush green leaves and vines, bumble bees swarming around my head attempting to sip the nectar the blooms provided. I am from a huge gray flat rock, jutting from the edge of the pasture into the edge of the woods and overhanging the hill that fell away to a tumbling clear creek, a passel of children roasting hotdogs, firm and red and dangling from a slim, green sapling branch, enjoying a peaceful Sunday afternoon around a pile of glowing embers.
I am from station wagons and weekly trips of grocery shopping each and every Saturday that God provided. I am from wild muscadines growing dense and green along the fencerows, the grape-like fruits were sweet and tangy and tart and delicious. I am from the cool, muted darkness of the woods, sheltered and refreshing in the summer’s blistering heat, huts made of vines and tree houses made of scavenged lumber and stolen nails and hammers. I am from the farm pond in the back pasture, deep and mysterious and clouded with red clay, muck and mud and cow patties. I am from rolling terraces of luxuriant red clover, sweet to smell and cool to the naked skin of a little girl’s leg as I tumbled downhill dodging bees.
I am from orange persimmons, tart and biting to the tongue as I waited for the bus every fall morning. I am from dotted Swiss dresses and shiny white leather shoes, frilly white little girl purses and white lacy hats at Easter. I am from lazy Saturday afternoons spent fishing with cane poles and dirty red wigglers in an old rusty coffee can along Rocky Ford, perched on the cool, damp creek bank under the cover of a thousand green leaves shading us from the sun. I am from hand churned ice cream, flavored with vanilla and eggs and rich, creamy canned milk. I am from cedar Christmas trees, chopped with an axe and dragged home, fragrant and prickly and green and decorated with Construction paper ornaments and popcorn chains.
I am from a house crowded with children and laughter and love. I am from home grown vegetables, big family dinners and spilled milk. I am from luxuriant green yards, vibrantly brilliant blue skies and the quiet hum of insects with none of today’s sounds of traffic and industry. I am from dim, dark outhouses and pure clean, clear water gushing from the ground, cool and delicious on your tongue. I am from the honest sweat of a hard day’s work staining my shirt and the feeling of accomplishment it brings at the end of the day. I am from never ending nights spent lying in the dew damp grass of the yard staring up at a million glowing stars hanging like fireflies in the night sky.
I am from 2 stick Popsicles for 10 cents and Nugrape and moon pies, stick bologna and Hoop cheese from the country store down the road. I am from long horseback rides down dusty, twisting gravel roads, from dragging home stray kittens and dogs and the occasional strange animal. I am from Sunday afternoon rambles in Mom’s car, with big Sis at the wheel, circling the Town Square trying to impress the local yokels with our charms and beauty. I am from skipping school and hiding our selves away in the Bankhead National Forest for a day of picnicking and rock climbing and a tryst of waiding in Mallard Creek's muddy red waters.
I am from the backbone of this country, farmers and blacksmiths, from Ireland and England and beyond. I am from a Cherokee princess and a voyager on the Mayflower. I am from a man I called Daddy, a sometimes harsh man, whose parents instilled the ethics and morals he passed on to his children, who worked from sun-up until sundown to provide a stable home and life for me. I am from a Mother who put my needs before her own, who played with me, sang with me and loved me unconditionally. I am from the strength and determination of a large family, giving me the wisdom that who I am, what I am is more than adequate.

15 comments:

Junebugg said...

OH HELL YEAH! Excellent, now if I ever get time I've gotta do one. Did you link to Pattie or just mention her< I forgot to look.

Welcome back, we can still ride the town square you know. And we got much prettier cars now!

BTude a.k.a. GlassHoppah said...

Hi Donna! What beautiful memories and wonderfully written prose. The verbal imagery is crisp and clear and makes me feel like I've been there.

I have to agree with your sis on all counts--you should continue writing--you're a natural. :)

Now you have to hound your loving sis into churning out one of her own--it would be interesting to see how two girls growing up in the same place interpret where they are from.

I'll try and squeeze in some time to do this, too. (that's a scary thought considering my roots) ;)

Junebugg said...

Here is the poem that started it all. "Where I'm From" by George Ella Lyons

Junebugg said...

I found this template here with samples

The WHERE I'M FROM Template

I am from _______ (specific ordinary item), from _______ (product name) and _______.

I am from the _______ (home description... adjective, adjective, sensory detail).

I am from the _______ (plant, flower, natural item), the _______ (plant, flower, natural detail)

I am from _______ (family tradition) and _______ (family trait), from _______ (name of family member) and _______ (another family name) and _______ (family name).

I am from the _______ (description of family tendency) and _______ (another one).

From _______ (something you were told as a child) and _______ (another).

I am from (representation of religion, or lack of it). Further description.

I'm from _______ (place of birth and family ancestry), _______ (two food items representing your family).

From the _______ (specific family story about a specific person and detail), the _______ (another detail, and the _______ (another detail about another family member).

I am from _______ (location of family pictures, mementos, archives and several more lines indicating their worth).

D Brooks said...

I would say that whomever you are is much more than adequate Donna :) Get your sister to bring you over to our places for a virtual visit, she knows the way :)

Junebugg said...

OK my first draft is up!

Omni said...

Donna, I hope you feel better soon!! xo

3rdtimesacharm( 3T ) said...

Dropped by to say "hello" Donna. Came by way of Junebugg.

Visually vivid writing Donna. I hope you share more with us.

Have a good weekend.

3T

Pammy said...

My pal Junebugg pointed the way and I'm VERY glad.

Now, write MORE! You're a joy to read.

Moogie said...

This is lovely! I hope you can keep posting, you definitely have a way with words. Thank you for sharing!

Junebugg said...

Bitichitude and Nongirlfriend (aka Chicken) have "Where I'm From" posts up. Go and check them out.

Anonymous said...

Donna, good to see you and read what you have to say. I am proud of you and your mother would be too. She ALWAYS bragged on her girls. Your daddy had such wonderful story telling abilities, I can see where you and Junebugg get it from. I love you.

Pat

osray said...

Hey Donna... So good to see you posting again... I have been a bit laid up lately and hadn't checked your blog for a few days but I always come back. Just starting to read your last post about your folks... Sounds like my folks... My Sweeties parents met on Fri at church and were married following Monday... I have the story in my blog somewhere. Bless you and yours.

Cowtown Pattie said...

This so tender and sweet. I love it. Funny, we all seem to remember a lot of the same things, maybe different part of the country, but still so alike...

Donna said...

Here's mine... http://journals.aol.com/mosie1944/MYCOUNTRYLIFE/entries/1512

And here's the one I did for my husband: http://journals.aol.com/mosie1944/MYCOUNTRYLIFE/entries/1515