“I’m From!” Student Poetry Reflections: Four Lines to Define Myself For Myself


During Women’s History Month, WLP mentors and peer educators taught an “Unpacking Rape Culture” sexual violence prevention education lesson plan for King-Drew Magnet hs health classes on the impact of sexual violence, misogyny/misogynoir, and toxic masculinity in the media, hip hop, and rap.  In addition to analyzing media images that normalize sexual violence and rape culture, students learned about Black women historical figures, activists, and writers such as bell hooks, Octavia Butler, and Claudette Colvin. Countering negative images that disempower and silence the voices of youth of color, students were asked to write poems reflecting on their lived experiences using the phrase “I’m From”.  Here are some of their selections:

Helena H, 9th grade

I’m from a family full of dreams

I’m from a neighborhood filled with the scent of soul food

I’m from a home with laughing and nothing but good times

I’m from a culture that stands with greatness power, uniqueness, and a legendary history



Anika Logan, 9th grade

I’m from the part of L.A. where police roam the streets and put out the heat

I’m from a fine line and TV dinner dine

I’m from gold chains, good clothes and Jordans and Nike

I’m from a neighborhood where the Mexicans jam to loud music at 2am and I end up jamming to it too

I’m from walking outside and hearing a black female say, “you look good, boo.”

Amber Tapia, 9th grade

I’m from the dirt of Spanish countries that have given me my roots

I’m from loud, chaotic, strong Hispanic women

I’m from the small kids playing soccer on the streets

I’m from the sentimental music of my Hispanic heritage

Dae’Aun Trotter, 9th grade

I’m from L.A. where I used to play baseball at the park and wake up to birds chirping

I’m from a hard working mother

I’m from where Hispanic and Black people get along

I’m from the beautiful sunrise and outstanding sunsets 

Bianca Reyes, 9th grade

I’m from the stars that shine in the night sky

I’m from the feeling after watching the concert that you have waited forever for

I’m from the song the Beatles sing

I’m from my mother, the woman who motivates me to be the best version of myself 

Makyla Whittaker, 9th grade

I’m from loud, ghetto neighborhoods with kids who live their lives

I’m from music that tunes people out and flies me to the sky

I’m from salty sea air that makes my summer a dream

I’m from homecooked tamales that I help my sister make

I’m from sitting in the chair for hours to get my hair braided