WingSpan Poetry Project


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I Am From Chi-town

or its frontier suburb
Downers Grove

Chi-Town, home of Al Capone
White Sox, the great home to immigrants
of all types.

We had rowdy holidays
roast turkey and andanocci.

At 10 the Beatles appeared
I wanna hold your hand.
I held his picture under my pillow
Paul Paul Paul

We had Leana our springer spaniel
who could swim the Great Lake for a mile out
We lived on the Great Lake Michigan
our own little cabin

Almost paradise
sand and woods and so much water blue
endless waves and water

into the vast lake
merging into eternity

Blue water Blue water

Clear Blue Water.




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I am from all four seasons

Tab and Butterfinger delight
Piñon trees and yucca plants and aspen trees
Salty oily nuts. Yum!

Loud relatives drinking, singing & playing guitar.
The 80s rocked and MJ was moon walking.

Tortillas with butter
Praying to statues
Spring, Summer, Fall & Winter. Brrr!

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I Am From the Red & Green

Where it always smells like vinegar and lemon scents.
Where it is always beautiful with the mountains
and the fresh calming winds at Hyde Park.

I am from where family gets together
and has fun.
Where there are bright stars and full moons.

I am from where a lot of people sing
for winter and spring.
Where piñon trees grow and red chile hatches,
cute cats and dogs are born (our cat Trouble)

Where we go to church and sing songs.

I am from the green cities and great buildings.

~ B, age 13

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I am from

a small town in Oklahoma.
I rode my horse all over the county. The horse threw me
off twice.
I lived on a farm until I was nine years old.
A rooster pecked me on the lip when I was six years old
but I still liked to hear it crow every morning.
My older brother when he was 14 was killed
in a farming accident. This turned my family
upside down. My mother began playing the organ
for the church. She grew roses
when we still lived on the farm
and I went to garden club with her.
I took my cat, Penny with me to garden club.

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The Jar

Made of thick glass
not far
from the edge of the dresser.

I reach …
Are you going to church?
Walk from Aspen Street to Birch
on Saturday eves.

That scent from the jar
now on your face
and then to your scarf,
it leaves a trace.

Why you chose that fragrance
from the jar
I know very well
not far …

You said farewell on that day
with the definite linger
of your Oil of Olay.



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As it rains

As it rains I sit here, dad,
wondering where that little girl is,
the one you read to and made up
stories for. This beautiful girl
loved to pick you flowers.
She always made sure
you were watching
as she twirled by.

You drove her way too fast
on the back of your bike.
One day, you let her in
on a little secret.
You said she was a keeper.
Her guilt was there, but the truth
was too. Best buds for life,
which can’t get much deeper.

We would sit and laugh
at the same old movies.
Four cigs at once,
then I’d put them out.
Spray paint your car
which made it cheaper.
Lay down and stare
at the deep, dark sky
wondering why life had to pass
us by. You were my dad
which a child-like mind.

Best buds for life
and that ain’t no lie.