Four different voices, each unique, each lovely.


Amanda Symonds

I am from the hot summer days to the piled high snows of winter.

I am from sledding down the big hill from riding bikes down the big hill.

I am from neighborhood hide and seek, swing sets and pools.

I am from dancing and being the one in the group to always get injured.

I am from the broken house in the “perfect” neighborhood.

I am from the alcoholic parent household.

 I am from skinned knees and “be home when the streetlights turn on.”

I am from having my first child, learning to be a better parent.

I am from learning my second might not live in utero,

from “you might die if you carry this baby full term.”

I am 25, with the weight of the world on my shoulders.

I am a fighter, I am a believer, I am from everyone deserves a chance to live.

I am a mother of 2.

I am a survivor from a cancer ridden pregnancy.

From chemo to weekly blood draws and checkups. 


Where Thy is From

Gavin Kruger — Adaptation of “Where I’m From” By George Ella Lyon

I am from wrenches

From Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups and the Bass Pro Fishing Isle

I am from the big barn in the back yard (Blue, old, it was an eyesore)

I am from the bamboo that encompassed the entire property

I remember as if I dealt with it today

I’m from Jalapeno Poppers and random knowledge

From Paul Kruger and Shelly Kruger

I am from fishing and hunting

From “Save your pennies” and “Work for it to earn it”

I’m from four-wheelers in the back yard on Sunday morning

I am from praying at dinner with the Fry’s

I’m from Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania

From Hershey’s Chocolate and Dove Chocolate

From the Disney World Monorail Pilot with only one picture in the cab

And the Financial advisor mother that was chosen for her job

In the albums at grandma’s,

Showing generations of family to live on in our hearts


Lisa Mellen Ben-Shoshan

I Am From

I am from Alice. I am from Judy. I am from Leah and Miriam and Anna and Bella and Estera. I am from Michigan and Delaware and Jerusalem and Ma’alot and Radomyshl and Warsaw and Korostyshev. I am from small towns which have faded into memory as they faded from the earth, as they were wiped from the earth in violence. I am from David as they honored a David who died by continuing his name. I am from Leo, I am from Pesach, I am from Henry and Abraham, from Morris and from Mordechai who became Max.

The people who created me did not all live to know me, but I know them. I write about them, I try to learn about them through the bare and minimal facts I can discover. I see the patterns in naming children after those who died, and I see the repetition of names through generations. I know the thrill of discovering that Avraham had two wives and that his son Samuel probably had a twin sister, even as his own children included twin boys.

I see the ships they arrived on; I see the child held back because he had an eye infection. I see the money they had in their pockets when they first arrived and I wonder how they managed to take that tiny sum and build a life that sustained not only them but also me, unseen, from their future. I see the apartments they crowded into, and I see the names of their neighbors often reappearing as their children married, children who played together on front stoops and in crowded streets.

And I see the ones who did not make it here. I am from them, as well: from Dyna’s family of eight whom I discovered one horrible night, who all perished in Auschwitz. I know their names, so they continue to live within me.

I see the threads connecting families over time spun and twisted like DNA. They are all a part of me as they live within my memory.

The women and the men who created me are all my mothers and fathers and their lines reach back through history. My history.


Where I am From

Shanice Keya

I am from a baby above

I am from a mother of seven

I am from someone who grows from her child,mentor,mother,father,siblings,grandma,friend,boyfriend, and the teachers who have taught me

I am from work that consist of long bus rides

I am from meditation 

I am from curls that change like the weather and grow like a seed

I am from home cooked meals

I am from struggle that keeps me motivated 

I am from april 2nd 

I am from 18 years of living

I am from Manchester where I take long walks and visit food spots

I am from being shy to speaking my mind

I am from breaking the cycle

I am from positivity


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