(The following post was inspired by the brilliantly cheeky ukulale-playing Elly of Bugginword, who saw a piece titled “Where I’m From” by another blogger and then wrote her own. Because LBL is nothing if not inspired by Elly, she wrote her own as a comment on her blog. The following is a slightly expanded version. It is not about LBL’s own journey, but that of her parents. She’d love to see everyone else’s.)
I am from shtetls long gone. I am from bare feet on dirt roads, and wagons pulled by aged horses. I am from the awe of endless forests. I am from rags stuffed into torn shoes during winter. I am from too much hunger and too little comfort.
I am from men bent over aged prayer books, women bent over dented copper pots. I am from small children hiding under kitchen tables when the soldiers come.
I am from fear and violence and from holocaust.
I am from ships and from miles that seem forever. I am from the smell of salt air and warm bodies. I am from the sound of whispered hope uttered with unfamiliar words. I am from the sight of unrecognized faces.
I am from a hunger for rebirth.
I am from long ragged lines of others who seek what I do, clutching what remains of lives now gone. I am from shoes and concrete and crowded streets. I am from cacophony. I am from confusion. I am from safety.
I am from opportunity, and from believing that when I see the sun set, I will also see it rise again.
I am from gratitude. I am from joy. I am from endless possibility.