I assign this poem to students all the time but I’ve never tried to do it myself so today’s mentor poem is Where I’m From by George Ella Lyon.

Here’s my first draft.


Where I’m From

I am from sunshine
clothes hanging on the line
oranges and apricots
(not a fan)
walnuts and almonds
(could never get enough)
I am from catfish
caught by papa
frozen by nana in a wax milk carton
to feed us in the winter months.

I am from Captain Kangaroo
Miss Nancy’s magic mirror
Bosco syrup and KoolAid
Red Skeleton and Ed Sullivan
G.I. Joe full-size and Barbie
with no moving parts.

I am from White Gloves and Party Manners
dresses made at home
winter coats from Rhodes
the PowWow parade
and fireworks at the high school on the fourth of July.

In my attic bedroom
I slept with open windows
the smell orange blossoms
carried to my dreams
by the ghosts that shared my space.

Susan Taylor Brown