As I finished my first semester of my Grade 11 year, I was given the opportunity to revise a piece of work I had completed in my IB English class. My last post, entitled “Where I’m From”, was the piece I chose to revise.

Poetry is a widely-used form of english literature and writing. It’s short yet detailed lines are what separates it from other text types. Poetry has always been one of my favourite forms of writing: for as long as I can remember, I have been coming up with rhymes and poems in my head for birthday cards and time-pass.

It is quite easy to look back on writing and see elements that could be changed. As “non-perfect” as this poem began, it remains proof of its still non-perfect nature. As I have attempted to revise and revamp this piece, I am simultaneously reminded of the sobering fact that this piece is always a work in progress. Much like myself.

~

Where I’m From

I am from the heart-shaped rock collected in my youth, kept as a memento for no particular reason. 

From the years of well-loved and generously used sports equipment accumulated and kept in my closet for memories sake, and white shelves atop my desk which have grown alongside me, their contents evolving as my journey does too. 

I am from the same 14 steps it has always taken me to climb the stairs, the lingering smell of rich intense spices one with my clothing as a constant perfume.

The pastel and icy blues and pinks of my room brightening under the rays of sunlight dancing in from my window, and the darkness of the night never quite taking over.

From my sweat-ridden face and clothes after a long run, leaping down the stairs between the five minutes separating classes to see my parents, and collapsing onto the floor lolling in exhaustion after a long day.

I’m from standing at the doorway just to be the last to wave goodbye to whomever leaves the house, and the several languages created solely ourselves as a product of mixing Hindi and English dialect together.

From the three names engrained in my mind, making up the family forever known in friend groups as “the ones who never stop laughing”.

I’m from the laid-back Saturday mornings spent on the couch regardless of workload, and from the evening family walks with no certain direction.

From the heartache of seemingly lost opportunities. 

I am from the beet juice drunk in the morning, and the minutes of muffled gagging that inevitably follow. 

I am from looking in the mirror, rehearsing everything from presentations to difficult conversations, constantly checking my reflection to straighten my back and position my shoulders for confidence.

I’m from Hamilton, though my blood foreign. 

From the heat and warmth coming from the coveted vegetable never gone unused or unnoticed in dishes. And from the pizza recipe: an unpredictable and unconventional recipe to be memorized by an Indian family. 

From the years spent alongside both my sister and best friend, laughing for no particular reason, always finding the time in our schedules to just talk . . . never letting physical distance get the better of us.

The two suitcases my parents packed their entire lives into before relocating to America in search of a new life.

The hundreds of moments frozen in time, captured in all their vividity. Constantly reminding us four where we came from, and showing us just how many places we can go from here. 

Where I’m Going

If Honesty is the best policy, I must admit

I have no such idea where I am heading. 

If there is anything I have learned this year, it is that planning ensures your heart’s calm. But life always has a plan of its own. 

I cannot pretend to be prepared just yet for what I might meet in the future,

But I am not scared. After all, what will come will come, and I will just have to meet it when it does.

Although I do not know where I might be, I will always know what I can take with me.

I’m going to take hope, love and bravery in every stride. 

I am going to ensure I appreciate the simplicity of beauty, the perfection in living imperfectly. 

I am going to keep putting one foot in front of the other. Always going to keep my palms outstretched to catch whatever life throws at me, friend or foe.

I am going to dive headfirst, but always look back.

I am going to the place where my envisionment of my future might not be just a fabrication in my head anymore, but can be in front of me if I want it to be.

I am never again going to throw away my identity to hide behind someone else’s.

I am going to keep making mistakes, the lessons I’ve learnt will continue to pile up.

Going to, someday, walk the halls of Westdale for the last time with a heavy but full heart. A dreaded, yet welcomed reminder that good things do come to an end.

But, I am going to keep in mind that the end of every journey marks the beginning of another. So it’s never really over.

I am going to forgive, but never forget.

I am never going to end my work with someone else’s words. 

I am going to get up the same way I always do, look out a different window but gaze at the same sky.

Much of what I know and have thought to be stable has been fogged over in the last 10 months.

But if there is one thing I am certain of

It is that I am going to be uncertain the whole way through.

But above all, I am going to live.

Always.

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