A poem written about the author, who hates writing about themselves.
i am from leather jewelry and silver rings From Youtube tutorials and cell slides under microscopes. i am from the white desk collecting hidden dust (pristine, yet full of color, photos of friends and idols as decoration.) i am from basil leaves: the green clumps picked, and placed into foods I rarely eat. i am from ice cream cake birthdays and i am a height outlier, From the curly strands and white blouse of a friend far away to the maroon streaks in fluffy black hair, with fingers adorned by jewelry of the boy who sits next to me. i am from perfectionism and apologetic meals; From “anything you want to be except an artist” and “don’t be like those other Asians”. i am from rusting lucky cats and crowded rooms—too much for a prayer to grandpa. i am from the slums of the city that never sleeps, a child of those from the fields of the Forbidden City. from my mother’s grueling wait, fleeing from those telling her she should settle down; the black and white wars of my great uncle in Japan. photos slipped into transparent books on my father’s shelves or stacked upon books on my great uncle’s desk. papers yellowing from timely picture frames and tea leaves, brought out to reminisce and show what happened all those years ago.
I’ve always hated writing anything about myself: poems, personal essays, and even introductions like the ones here. My mentor suggested I try to step out of my comfort zone with writing I am comfortable with– poetry. We used a template to emulate George Ella Lyon’s poem “Where I’m From” to begin this journey, and despite the hardships– it turned out alright!
Demarie Hao is a high school student located in New York City. She has been recognized by Scholastic Arts and Writing in Personal Essays, and hopes to continue representing herself in writing competitions and scientific research and writing. She is currently an editor at Polyphony Lit and her school's newspaper. Her favorite types of writing are Journalism, Scientific, and Poetry.