Everyone Has An Origin Story, by Jennifer Harrison
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Everyone Has An Origin Story, by Jennifer Harrison.

I am from a white brick mansion in the city
surrounded by magnolia trees,
tadpoles, and lions carved into the wall.
Yet I am also from a tiny shack in the country
with creaky floors
and the stink of poverty.

I am from servants and slaves,
beauty queens, teachers, and farmers,
women before their time
and men who died too young.
I am from great wealth, white privilege,
and the eviction notice at the door.

I am defiance and manners,
hope and conviction,
love and despair.

I am from a musician
and the murder suicide,
Scottish poetry
and the Civil War bride.
I am from French rebel outcasts,
the house of bees.

I am from good girls and femme fatales,
from men both gentle and heartless.
I am from champagne,
homemade Bloody Marys,
Delta music,
and endless parades.

From a diversion off the traveled road
with no chance of returning.

I am from fancy dinner parties,
and kept appearances
drowning in rules of etiquette.
I am from the religion of men
and the submissive wife,
upholstered walls,
and celebrities in the halls.
I am from the queen of Volunteers,
and her king whose titles she took.
I am from tragedy
and desolate suburban ideals.

I am from extravagance and thrift
madness and responsibility
adventures and isolation.
I am from relentless honesty
and acute individualism.
Most directly, I am from her
from the best and worst parts of her
from one of a kind.

I am from dynastic remarkability
and hillbilly irrelevance.


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Everyone Has An Origin Story, by Jennifer Harrison