I come from women
Who prefer not to smile.
From witches and warlocks
I come from the vampires that roam the streets
Of New Orleans at night
And the cab drivers who refuse
To take you down dark alleyways.
I come from designated drivers
and "Text me when you get home
So I know you're okay,"
I come from bad decisions
With good outcomes,
Repeated mistakes masquerading as stubbornness,
From cycles of pain
And secrets swept under rugs
Never to be spoken of again.
I come from ghosts hiding in pennies,
Telling me everything is going to be okay
Just as long as I keep writing,
Another line, another poem
Dedicated to relatives who died
Long ago, Far before I will ever know who I am
I come from an inescapable need
To make my parents proud,
No matter what it takes.
I come from constellations and guitar solos,
A love hate relationship with my own existence
And a hatred of the color pink.
I come from evolution,
Because as I grow I realize there is absolutely nothing wrong with the color pink
And I am nowhere near close to mapping
Every vein, every street of my hometown,
Every word in the English language.
I come from Aphrodite and Sappho, from shame and hatred
And love and growth,
I come from duality
Realizing that the world is not black and white
But a twisted blend of yellows and blues
And the red that always seems to creep it’s way
Into my dresses and dreams.
I come from washed up prom queens
And artists who never quite made it,
I come from fire
And rejection after rejection after rejection
Until you feel like there’s no point going on.
I come from dreams deferred and abandoned,
Puppy love and
Devotion to ideas I can’t comprehend.
I come from shallow graves and high notes,
Regrets and years wasted,
Art created out of darkness
To be the light at the end of the tunnel.
I come from lost men,
Second guessing lifelong commitments and thinking
I only wish I had done more
From misunderstandings and misanthropy,
Hallucinations, Halloween, and chipped nail polish
On hands covered in dirt
Hands that cut and carve me into who I say I am, what I say I’m from
So I say I’m from a god I don’t believe in,
I’m from years of pain and sacrifice,
I’m from poetry and rain and thunder
I am from dirt
I am so much more
Than what I come from
Because I come from hometown gossip
But I am an artist,
I am a poet,
I am everything I’ve ever felt and every lie I will ever tell
I am the streets I grew up on
And every mile my feet will walk, every sight my eyes will see
I am every dream my family gave up
To give me the opportunity to say
That I come from love
And my own determination to keep going
So I come from the eerie stillness before a storm
And every downed power line.
I come from power
I come from everything
At the same time,
But I still don’t know
If I will ever understand
Where I’m really from.