I am from candles, lit during summer storms;
I am from Palmolive and honeybuns.
I am from the blue skies of Alabama.
I am from the tomato plants and the wildflowers.
I am from tree trimmin’ and pea shellin’.
I am from Denise and Saundra Jo.
I am from rocking chairs and wooden pews,
from “can’t never could, ‘cause can’t never tried”
and “treat others the way you wanna be treated.”
I’m from the little Baptist church where everybody knows everybody.
I’m from Dannstaat and Montgomery,
from canned pickles and homemade salsa in Mason jars.
I’m from Hieronymus Bock, the first botanist
and swimming with the dolphins for my seventeenth birthday on a family trip.
I am from yellowing pages held together in three ring binders.
I am from my ancestors; they’re who I am and where I’m from.
It’s history and it’s never ending.