E.J. Fitzsimmons: A Life of Music
Reid Shilling: The Bay

Odom Sam: Where I Am From


I am from the tire screeches that pierce the ears and the flashing lights that daze the sights.

loud music that sways the mind and the beats that echo in the neighborhoods,

the security of fences, yet the hatred and vulnerability of the borders.

I am from the torn country that was left in shambles and the lost children that were forgotten.

From the crimson red and cerulean Blue flag that falsely waves in the sky and the half raised counterpart that I look up at now; that struggles to rise again.

“Don’t give up, Don’t give in. Stand up; take control.”

Support comes from within and around,

Uplifting the sorrowful past and abandoned dreams;

To open new doors for opportunities.

I am from the lonely timbering trees at the corner of the streets, misplaced and surrounded

by the cold, rugged cement.

The trash scattered streets that reek of the stench of hopelessness,

the vacant clear walls covered with colored impressions and letters.

The lost and faithful who wander the streets,

searching for loose coke bottles and dented cans,

Scavenging for the pieces of survival that derive from the--

Clink! and Clang!

I am from the fluffy, white rice and the juicy, smokey Loc Lac that melts as I chew.

The greasy, messy hamburgers and the fruit flavored soft drinks that dance on the surface of the tongue.

I am from the fruit smoothies with black gummy pearls,

and the crunchy, yet soft fried ice cream,

yet still apart of the sweet apple pie and light whipped cream.

I am from the reassuring home, that is dependent on open arms.

From the two embracing pillars, that bring me up with a heartening tone,

“ I love you...” “I am always thankful.”

I am from the family ties that are like the roots of the Bo tree; unbroken and forever growing.