“Where I’m From”, by WITS Student Ahlam Khaleefa

Where I’m From

I come from Ding Dong, Beep Beep Beep, Sponge Bob Squarepants.
I come from the comfy gold sofa, sitting at a brown desk and putting on lipstick.
Where I come from the clock goes backwards and the eyeliner won’t turn.
Where I come from we eat Subway sandwiches and Ethiopian dishes,
we celebrate an amazing holiday called Eid.

I come from friends who sing badly but work hard.
I come from, “How you doing?” and, “You need help?”

Where I come from you’ll be hearing Skylar Stecker or Jason Derulo.
I come from the sky, blue and wet, where education is life,
Where the truth sounds like, “Please believe me.”

Where I come from kids run like the wind, and life is amazing but not perfect.
Where I come from friends are our pass to paradise.
Where I come from people never say goodbye.

Ahlam Khaleefa wrote this poem while a student at Washington Middle School, with WITS Writer-in-Residence Daemond Arrindell. She read it to open for Geraldine Brooks when she spoke as part of SAL’s Literary Arts Series on January 28, 2016.

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