Where I’m From
By Lisa Lukasiewicz

I’m from the top of the old climbing tree
From the dress-up box and the rickety swing set
I’m from the little ranch house I’ve always known
With its big backyard and endless possibilities
I’m from hot Denver days and cold Colorado nights
From sprinkler heads and the tingle of snowflakes on my tongue

I’m from Grandma Faith’s upright piano
(Keys of magic playing whatever my heart wished to hear)

I’m from the competitive streak
From the easy-going and the high-strung
I’m from my namesake
From Grandpa’s shop and Grandma’s thanksgiving dinners
I’m from obnoxious laughters,
Apron pockets full of pink peppermints,
And an old tin can full of chewed tobacco
I’m from The Cabin where cares are forgotten
And coming home for Christmas is the law From
I’m from the little canyon house where Seven Eleven was heaven
From Grandma Luke’s unwavering faith and Poppa Luke’s love of the game
I’m From sparkling blue eyes, long legs, and natural athletes
From the faces that surround me like little mirrors
And the van we all pile into for road trips
(gray and rusty with a luggage rack on top)
I’m from an eleven letter last name
And all the Polish pride behind it

Beside my bed is a Bible
The one they got especially for me
The one with my name engraved in gold lettering

Embedded deep within the binding,
My favorite memories lie like treasures among the tattered sometimes tearstained pages
Cards, pictures, scribbled dreams and failures
Waiting every night to sing me off to sleep

I’m from the millions of prayers uttered up before
I’m from those same words that never seem to let me down

In the Corner of my Childhood
In the corner of my yard is a large sandbox complete with a swing set and wooden fort. As I glance out the kitchen window, ghostlike memories catch my eye as they float in and out of my childhood haven. I close my eyes and let long forgotten images flood my senses. I can feel the wind rippling my hair as I lean back and let my favorite swing whisk me away on a magical adventure. I remember the tangy taste of raspberries melting on my tongue as I eat them in the shelter of my tipi. The hot summer sun beats down on my bleach blonde head and I remember the sound of my sister’s laugh as we bake chocolate pies and loaves of bread in our corner store bakery. Puddles collect around my bare feet and I remember the smell of raindrops melting into the earth as I construct bustling villages out of wet sand. After a hard day on the frontier, I remember the welcoming sight of my log cabin as I come riding home with the sunset. Imagination has a lot to do with childhood and childhood has a lot to do with reality. As I gaze out the kitchen window I see the little girl I once knew enjoying the sweet simplicity of a summer daydream. For a moment my cares are forgotten and I stroll out and sit on my favorite swing. I kick off my shoes and begin to swing back and forth to the familiar creez, creeeek, of unoiled hinges. For a moment I can see the sandbox as it once was; a place where the world was only big enough for my dreams. A tinge of sadness sweeps over me and I can’t help but wish I had never grown up, but in reality I haven’t really changed. None of my adventures have been forgotten and those care-free days still live on in my imagination. My swing slows to a stop and I head back inside, leaving my memories in my precious childhood corner for safe keeping.