I am From

PNNscholar1 - Posted on 14 October 2010

*Note from POOR Magazine Co-Editor Tony Robles

This fantastic poem was written by my cousin Kyra Bowes, a youth scholar living in New Jersey.  Kyra is a poet, songwriter, and dancer. She and her mother Leslie Yngojo-Bowes visited POOR Magazine recently.  Kyra  graciously demonstrated her dancing to our children in POOR Magazine's Family project.  The children followed her moves, step building upon step--flowing beautifully to the music coming from not only the radio, but from our ancestors who live in our sacred space at POOR Magazine--including the spirit of our Uncle Al, whose presence is strong.   I am very proud of Kyra. Her poem demonstrates the values of POOR Magazine:  honoring family, eldership and remembering--values that come from poetry, the life's blood of POOR Magazine.


I am From

By Kyra Bowes


Camping trips

And shopping sprees.

Soccer games

And tennis tourneys.




That’s me.

Drawing every little thing I see.


I am from a great line of activists.

Half are peacemakers.

And others use iron fists.

Travelers from around the world.

Coming here to speak their voice.

Having to make their own right choice.


I come from Veterans.


And activists.



And artists.

In blood their talents sit.

In my heart, their light is lit.

They’ve lead.



And inspired the world.

From Germany to England.

From China to Japan.

Spain to The Philippines.


Around the world, it seems I’ve seen.

Traditions from all over.

Joining my cousins playing red rover.

Houses painted white.

With little picket fences.

Barns on a field.

With animals trotting the grounds.


I am from sayings like

“Stand up for what’s right.”


“No texting past midnight.”

From my brother yelling

“No dating till eighty-five.”

To my daddy saying

“Take a risk, learn how to dive.”


My great Uncle, may he rest in peace.

“Don’t cry for me.

Don’t think I am gone.

I am here, for whatever is right and wrong.

I am not dead.

For I am still living,

In your hearts,

And mind,

And soul.”

I come from a symbolized family.

Gay rights and the lord.

Farmers driving tractors.

Others in a ford.


I come from hard wooden-floors.

With a red little rug.

In the cabinets,

You’d see a “#1 Daddy” mug.


This is who I am.

This is how my family is and forever will be.

If you don’t like them.

Then you don’t like me(:


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