I am from homemade tortillas on a wood stove, from rice and beans, a Coca-Cola treat, solar panels, and handmade pine furniture.
I am from cupboards of every color, a woven bamboo floor, screen windows, majestic sunsets over a mountain valley, and a smooth-flowing river in the backyard.
I am from orchids in trees, bamboo rustling, banana leaves formed into cups for spring water, citrus blossoms scenting the air, flowering bushes as high as a house, and God, God everywhere in His creation.
I am from American patriotism and prayers before meals, from Esther and Jean and Barbara.
I am from the poor who love to live rich and the frugal hard workers who freeze and garden, save and store. I am from loud singers, arguments in a station wagon, and kneading bread by hand.
From The Rabbit and the Hare when I am scared and Sunday School songs I’m never too old to hear.
I am from cross-legged worship outdoors and fancy handsewn Easter dresses in pews. Centuries-old hymns and modern praise songs. Dolly Parton and Bon Jovi.
I’m from the Dogwood Festival, the South Pacific, and the Deep South, canned peaches in sugary syrup, pineapple straight from the garden, and organic eggs from happy hens covered in buttery grits.
From the farmer who married his hand-quilting, home-canning sweetheart and the fun-loving, Bible-loving missionary who married a quiet girl with a love for hydrangeas.
I am from a creek by a lake, the Highlands, and the sea. I am from modern conveniences and an outhouse in the jungle. A Kitchen Aid powered by a generator, kerosene lanterns, candles, and central air-conditioning.
I am also from my now: four happy children, full days, a good man, and still… God, God everywhere in His creation.
Lori McAlister Seaborg
It was good for me, in a bubble bath way, to spend an afternoon thinking about where I’m from, as I’m from no place in particular. My family is scattered, has always been, and there is no particular geographic location to call “home.” Well, I’d call where I am now with the little family I created “home,” but I mean, when someone – usually someone who notices I don’t have a Southern accent – asks me where I’m from, I usually stutter and mumble. What to say?
After writing Where I’m From, I found that I am from someplace after all, and I like where I’m from. Tortillas and grits and solar panels and all!