Friday, April 17, 2009

Poem - Where I come From

I come from a picture of my family
Twelve of us, together at once
Frozen in the animate language
Of laughter

I can etch out
The faces, trace their smiles
And say, she is me, second to the left
In the bottom row, between sister and mother
Yet I am not her.

I was once her
Dwarfed by my siblings
If not in size, but in sheer life
Caught between the states of impression
And self
Wondering who I was

Their faces are confident
Fleshed out, dimensional and whole
Whereas she is parchment paper
Transparent, flat, only an outline
A cartoon character
Not the lead heroine in her life

She is uncomfortable, uneasy
Uncertainty comes to life
In a black dress and high heels
Her face mirrors theirs, laughing,
But her eyes are pleading
For experience, for character

She does not yet identify
She does not yet embody
She does not know who she will emulate
Or follow, or become,
In her quest of self

And yet her body tilts
Aligns with her family
Surrounded by love and laughter,
And acceptance
And in the flash of a camera
She becomes me

I am from my family
I am the ninth, the sometimes overlooked
The always loved
But I,
I am myself
And myself comes from within me

1 comment: