New Park, Pennsylvania

I am from New Park, Pennsylvania which you’ve probably never heard of

I’m from the house at the bottom of the hill

I am from a town where everybody knows each other

I am from Gretchen, the lady who makes the coffee at the gas station

I’m from a family so close you would swear we have rubber bands around us

I’m from Peppermint, who was a cat, but more like a friend

I am from vegetable gardening with Poppop to flower gardening with Mommom

I’m from “Play with fire & you wet the bed!” whenever my cousins and I started burning the marshmallows for fun

I am from cornfields that never stopped

I am from being the girl whose Daddy went to jail

After my uncle died, I was from “Never go past the driveway!”

I am from Nascar and making deer jerky on Sundays after church with Poppop

I’m from pictures being taken again and again and again

I’m from my cousin and long time best friend Abby Rae

I’m from camouflage rain boots, boy clothes, and sparkly tiaras

I am from Aunt Tay Tay who had me convinced she wore a perfume labeled Cigarette

I’m from bee stings, bug bites, bruised knees, and scabs

I’m from time traveling to the future everyday in my backyard

I am from New Park, Pennsylvania which you’ve probably never heard of

Cameron Males

There’s Always Adventure

I’m from twirling spaghetti and slurping it up as fast as I can, so I won’t get spaghetti sauce on my mouth.

I’m from a neighborhood named Lakewood Estates which is in the middle of nowhere.

I’m from a sister who is in Philadelphia making it seem like I’m an only child.

I’m from creek hopping and Crayfish snapping at my fingers.

I’m from four cats giving me a cold and a dog barking at every loud noise that comes in the house.  

I’m from a long trip up to Allentown to see my favorite cousins.

I’m from the freshly cut grass that just came from the running lawnmower.

I’m from “Duuddee” every time my dad and I greet from him coming home from work.

I’m from Led Zeppelin and Nathaniel Rateliff blaring from the radio.

I’m from crossing the woods to meet my best friend Jake at his house.

I’m from the smell of the smoke from the fire burning and staying up until 1am.

I’m from the vast lands of Italy.

I’m from being disgruntled every time the Eagles play.

Caleb Leanza

How I Grew Up

I’m from a small town called Manheim with my elementary school two blocks up the street, then a small house on top of a hill in Conestoga.

I’m from being the youngest child and being picked on by an older brother and two older sisters.

I’m from a big pot of homemade chicken corn soup.

I’m from a family with big hearts and attitudes.

I’m from watching my brother work on his cars.

I’m from a family gathering and great food on every holiday.

I’m from going out to eat every Friday after we picked up my dad from work.

I’m from learning electrical as I was growing up from my grandfather’s electrical company.

I’m from living with all girls since my parents split up when I was nine.

I’m from going into my best friend’s house every weekend in Lancaster who I met from our dads being best friends.

Joshua Pridgen

I’m from…

I’m from the small town of Conestoga, just south of Lancaster, near Millersville.

I’m from delicious chicken pot pie to golden rivels in chicken corn soup.

I’m from Safe Harbor, which resides close to the water tower, and the dam.

I’m from a family of teachers, except for a few.

I’m from competing in football and lacrosse.  

I’m from working hard in the fields, to resting on Saturday mornings.

I’m from one end of Conestoga to the other.  

I’m from pork and sauerkraut on New Years, to roast beef falling apart in the crock pot.

I’m from an only child household, to competing on a team with others.

I’m from “always be on time, early but never late” to “don’t burn bridges.”

I’m from several cats to none.

I’m from playing till dark, to now working till dark.

Caleb Walton

My House

I’m from Coffee Street where every day the house smells like coffee.

I’m from a house where coffee with creamer is not considered coffee.
I’m from a 5 minute walk to my grandparent’s house that smells like cinnamon hearts.

I’m from a family that supports all my sporting events and encourages me to try something new.

I’m from a wake up kiss from my dog.

I’m from a place where traveling is always a must.

I’m from a house that wakes up way too early on the weekends.

I’m from a blue eye and brown hair house.

I’m from “ride safe and don’t crash” when I ride atv.

I’m from a have fun kinda house.   

Toby Singer

These Days Always Lit

I’m from a place that smells of pine and sap.

I’m from a place that is called Columbia.

I’m from a small patch of woods behind my home.

I’m from a old trail in the back yard.

I’m from some sketchy ramps in the front.

I’m from making my brother go first on those sketchy ramps.

I’m from the halls of OLA and the mats of P.M.

I’m from the countryside but listen to rap.

I’m from not worrying to not caring.

I’m from eventful days and bike rides.

I’m from “I just can’t right now.”

I’m from the bad home cooking and the burnt chicken.

Thomas Keener


I’m from Sicily more specifically from Via Corlene Road in Palermo, Sicily.

I’m from prima colazione which constituted of bread with olive oil, vinger, and butter which now makes me sick.

I’m from a place with beautiful mountain ranges, and a sea that is both calm are fierce. A place where the cities are beautiful, but the populace is less so.

I’m from the wheat the Sicilian farmers pick with their bear hands that become bread.

I’m from the sea air hitting your face, seagulls flying around, and the boats coming, and leaving the harbor.

I’m from “If you hurt your family…may you die alone like a dog”. Where hurting your family is seen as the worst offence.

I’m from where that old man wears that weird hat, and we must obey by his religion, and what he preaches.

I’m from a family of self made men, and women who denied social norms. A family where when you say something it gets done one way, or the other.

I’m from a family that is divide on religion some believe in Catholicism, and others Atheism.

I’m from a family where we had to make decisions based on reason, and not emotion.

I am from a family in a far off land name Sicily, and in that far off land I’m a Vespucci.    

Alejandro Morales

School Lane to Stone Hill

I’m from a small house on South School Lane near Hamilton Park and Buchanan Elementary.

I’m from moving at age eleven to Stone Hill Road down the street from Pine View Dairy and Jason’s Woods.

I’m from Thursday night’s spent at Best Friend Grammy’s and eating breakfast with my great grandparents on Friday morning.

I’m from homemade applesauce, warm fasnachts, and every holiday crowding around the table for dinner.

I’m from Riggs a lazy English Bulldog and Jake a playful Old English Sheepdog.

I’m from seven hour car rides to the Outer Banks for annual summer vacations.

I’m from fishing for minnows and crayfish in creeks with Pappy.

I’m from hot dogs, baked beans, and buttered noodles, an everyday lunch at my Grammy Hamaker’s.

I’m from two hard working parents Sam and Jess who always taught me to “Be a leader”.

I’m from growing up listening to Pearl Jam, Weezer, Cake, Jimmy Buffett, and Destiny’s Child.

I’m from searching through ten recipe boxes to find Grammy’s homemade chicken pot pie.

I’m from a little sister Madison watching and mimicking my every move.

I’m from Coach Daddy for 8 years always telling me to work hard all the time.

I’m from “how do you not like it if you’ve never tried it”.

I”m from going to my Grammy Bachman’s house for every Halloween.

I’m from family and friends are the most important people in your life.

Emma Hamaker

A Care-free Childhood

I’m from a big, yellow doll house hidden on a mountain top, in a forest seclusion, with a view of a Neverland look-a-like in Conestoga

I’m from playing pretend Cops and Robbers in my backyard

I’m from refused naps and watching movies containing princesses to monsters

I’m from Mother Nature teaching me the way the world works as I swing

I’m from being mermaids with friends in my pool

I’m from sneaking into my sister’s room and letting curiosity guide me

I’m from forbidden moonlight walks in my enchanted woods

I’m from needing my Bugs Bunny nunny everywhere I went

I’m from lunch everyday at 11:48 am, on the dot

I’m from constant snacking with a remaining petite body

I’m from rough housing to random jokes with my brothers

I’m from two sisters and three brothers

I’m from falsely accused “She did its” even though he clearly started it

I’m from the slight competition of an all artistic family

I’m from the scent of sand castled laundry detergent

I’m from the smell of summer consisting of Hubba Bubba Watermelon flavored gum

I’m from moonwalking in the grass, and putting on mini shows in the living room

I’m from watching my sister play her Gamecube way past my bedtime

I’m from TV quote contests to modeling my brother’s Gaga creations

I’m from my own imagination

Kayla Connelly

The Little Things….

I am from a quiet development near Manor Middle.

I am from a family of seven.

I’m from “You were a miracle baby”.

I am from brown eyes and blonde hair.

I am from a bunch of crocs and flip flops.

I am from the sweet smell of chicken pot pie.

I am from “Look mom there’s my school”.

I am from singing the national anthem

at the Barnstormers game.

I’m from “Let’s go visit the nursing home”.

I am from soccer as a kid.

I’m from field hockey as a teenager.

I am from Serteen community hours.

I am from Instagram memories.

I’m from the baby of the family.

I am from working hard for what you have.

I’m from good old U.S.A.

Briana Harsh

Growing Up In a CIty

I am from horns and sirens in city streets.

I am from Tyreed and Ty-rude stealing my toys,

And from the police at the neighbors

I am from walking past the jail on the way to the park,

From playing in an old basement.

I am from playing with plastic food in an old fridge.

I am from dancing around to the show high five,

From screaming HI UBYDUBBY!

I am from being called Peepers,

And Rutabaga.

I am from playing in my grandmother’s barn.

I am from the smell of gas.

I am from moving out of the city to Penn Manor.

From The Bottom

I am from a broken home.

From where it was just my two brothers, my mom, and I.

I am from times where we wouldn’t see our mom two through three days at a time.

From watching her work double shift after double shift after double shift.


I am from run down apartments.

From where basketball courts have either bent rims or ripped nets.

I am from where most people didn’t go to school.

From where I had to take two public buses to get to school.


I am from where people always say it will get better but it only worsens.

From a big city but it seemed like everybody knew everybody.

I am from where the good dies young.

From where it’s common for the parent to bury their child due to violence.
I am from the bottom but that does not determine where I’m headed!

When Time Passes

Wasn’t I just an infant? Crying in my mother’s arms and receiving all sorts of attention?


Wasn’t I just three? Crawling and walking everywhere to feel big?


Wasn’t I just five? The days of heading off to kindergarten and the excitement rushing through me?


Wasn’t I just seven? When the playground at school was the best place to play?


Wasn’t I just nine? When I acted as if I was a princess and the world revolved around me?


Wasn’t I just eleven? The whole year I had the same double digits?


Wasn’t I just thirteen? The “cool” teenager who needed to text and have a good amount of friends?


Wasn’t I just fifteen? When all I wanted was to turn 16 and have bigger opportunities?


Am I now really seventeen? Going to college in less than two years and becoming an adult? 

— Meghan Onderdonk 

I Am From Being Me

I am from the tire swing tied to the old tree.

I am from “Sarai, Stop! You’re not a dog!!”

I am from peeing off roofs with my cousin.

I am from grabbing a scorching hot curling iron with my bare 5 year old hand.

I am from playing Candy Land and Guess Who on rainy days.

I am from VeggieTale songs in the car.

I am from the buttered noodles and Salisbury steak on the table.

I am from licking ketchup off the floor.

I am from “ Be yourself, they’ll love you. “

I am from Ace Ventura: Pet Detective.

I am from Crankin’ Dat Soulja Boy in the kitchen.

I am from going on the computer just to use Paint.

I am from watching Robot Chicken on Adult Swim after my parents went to sleep.

I am from the nightmares before, on, and after Halloween.

I am from watching The Adventures of Shark Boy and Lava Girl.

I am from riding a bike with no brakes and crashing into a car.

I am from learning to accept myself.

I am from being who I am.

I am from my friends and family who helped me find myself.

I am from the name Sarai. 

— Sarai Figueroa 

I’m From Sun and Rain That Never Has Been Tamed

I’m from a house of seasonal smells; from autumn leaves, to pine cone trees, to summer breeze.

I’m from a little town called Columbia on busy 5th and Union where the sounds of sirens surround us.

I’m from a mom of many years and a step daddy after a few.

I’m from a couple of brothers and just one sister.

I’m from the lands of Ocean City Maryland with the waves that hit us.

I’m from fun games and silly play from back in the day.

I’m from watching music videos to learn to make my own.

I’m from my annoying little brother, always trying to top us.

I’m from writing in my journal because I never really had a fellow.

I’m from variety of tastes because my mom swore she was Rachael Ray.

I’m from looking up at the sky asking for forgiveness on my lies.

I’m from never knowing, but continuing to keep going.

I’m from putting others before me.

I’m from depression that taught me a very big lesson.

I’m from never letting go and saying to myself “ you got this for sho”.

I’m from a little big mouth that always liked to shout.

I’m from a girl that never was understood, but everyone seemed to know me.

I’m from learning to survive by myself because really, I have no one else. 

— N.G 

When I was Little

When I was little I looked at life differently.

When I was little the worst thing you could do was lie to your parents.

When I was little losing a crayon was the end of the world.

When I was little the scariest thing was when the lights went out.

When I was little my parents could do no wrong.

When I was little the only thing I worried about was losing my stuffed animal.

When I was little monsters weren’t human.


I’m not little anymore.


Who Am I?

I’m from the cobble stone adorned streets of Marietta, PA.

I’m from the two-hundred year old eye catcher that everyone seems to know.

I’m from Rich and Nancy, two kids in love.

I’m from the family dog, just as big as a miniature pony.  

I’m from “Sorry I lost my head.”

I’m from night cruises in the 67’ Mustang with mom.

I’m from the  roaring sound of two stroke motorcycle motors echoing in the West Virginia hills.

I’m from the tales of my Grandpa’s childhood over Grandma’s fresh breakfast.

I’m from an old fashioned family full of tomboys, carpenters and mechanics.

I’m from the friends I’ve known for as long as I can remember.

I’m from family Christmas mornings, every year.

I’m fishing trips and bike rides with dad.

I’m from a picture perfect family picture, filled with love.  

— Pierce Mellott 

My Life

I’m from Nilsa Rodriguez and Jose Anaya who came from Arroyo, PR.

I’m from the smell of chocolate chip pancakes with syrup in the morning.

I’m from the technology side of my family, where playing video games is my favorite hobby.

I’m from the family of half siblings, where my mother is the mom of my oldest sister and I, and my father is the dad of my two sisters, brother and I.

I’m from the Penn Manor School District, where my schools were Hambright Elementary, Manor Middle, and Penn Manor High School.

I’m from the parents that never went to Puerto Rico before I was born until fifteen years later.

I’m from the parents that became married on March 19, 2014.

I’m from the gaming side of the Playstation Nation.

I’m from Pennsylvania going to Mexico to go to my sister’s wedding on September 1, 2014.

I’m from the family that encourages me to be who I am, and inspires me to be what I look for in the future.

Where I’m From

I am from the crazy city of New York, to the quiet and calm of Lancaster, PA.

I am from camping with the family any chance we get.

I am from the family being in the newspaper many times and on the news for our house being terrifying with the decorations on Halloween.

I am from almost falling on the floor in the delivery room when I was a baby and the nurse barely catching me.

I am from a large family of my mom, dad, older brother, older sister,two younger sisters and a two year old niece.

I am from me and my dad loving the smell of gunpowder and the intensity of focus it takes when we aim down our rifles at the little targets when we are at the shooting range.

I am from watching the science channel since I was in first grade and gaining a strong love to science and technology today and planning a science based career

I am from getting my books taken away by teachers till the end of class for reading during the class, even literature classes.

I am from helping my family cook every year on Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve, cooking from early morning, till dinner.

I am from the family who lost our Nan who meant so much to all of us, so all of the adults and I got a tattoo in remembrance of her.

I am from Until I see you again.

My Childhood in a Poem

I’m from loud New York City to laid back Lancaster County

I’m from having dress up and tea parties with my little brother who I made do anything with me

I’m from warm vanilla candles burning throughout the house and fuzzy blankets wrapped around me like a cocoon

I’m from crazy bicycle rides and burning scrapes on my knees with white gauze wraps

I’m from groups of friends being just boys and playing football in the backyard

I’m from creating dances with my friends and performing a show in front of everyone

I’m from being daddy’s little girl and mommy’s little helper

I’m from two happily married parents who always taught me what it’s like to be crazy in love with someone

I’m from the fresh smell of bait in the tackle box and the salty sea air

I’m from the last years when technology was never introduced and I actually had a childhood


Road Not Taken

Before me stands a small girl looking around the age of five. Her face is wet and swollen from the tears streaming down her flushed cheeks. I know she has done nothing wrong yet those around be differ. By those around around me, I mean father. I can relate to my sister’s predicament far too well. The room reeked of the smell of alcohol. There were shards of glass sprayed across the floor authenticating that this is, in fact, reality. My instincts to run up to her and save her tremble when my father turns his eyes to me. I lower my eyes to the stained floor boards. I hear the soft sniffling coming from my younger sister. Then a strange bubbling feeling grows inside of me, but I know it’s not fear. I cannot witness him harm me nor my sister any longer than it already has. With new found determination I straighten my back and shoot my eyes upward. I stare intently into my father’s bloodshot eyes.

“No,” I whisper. The eyes staring back at me sharpen and look at me with the intensity of an eagle soaring over the treetops. I will not let him be the eagle.

“What did you just say?” He snarls with no trace of sympathy; or any feeling if that. It was as if he was possessed by some unhumanly force.

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From Wales

I’m from a goof that is stupidly smart.

I’m from fear of not failing.

I’m from a dysfunctionally functional family.

I’m from “Just go for it”.

I’m from the smell of Mexico.

I’m from the keys of my piano.

I’m from the vineyards of Italy and the football of Wales.

I’m from “Nah, your good”.

I’m from Wayne Wesley Wales or W3 for short.

I’m from “Forget about the past, and keep moving forward”.


I’m From My Old Home

I’m from a city named Hampton, Virginia.

I’m from Mark, Lyn, Uncle Bobbie, Bobbie and Chase.

I’m from pets, past and present.

I’m from being the only one to being the oldest one.

I’m from the music of Aerosmith and ACDC.

I’m from “Home is where the heart is”.

I’m from where enemies are friends and friends are family.

I’m from sweet smelling apple pies in my Nana’s oven.

I’m from memories held within the binds of scrapbooks.

I’m from generations of cancer, sickness and strength.

I’m from friends that help me when going through tough times.

I’m from separation and coming together.

I’m from a place left, but never forgotten.


From the Countryside

I’m from the back roads where everyone knows your name.

I’m from the everyday meals at my grandparents– cherished memories.

I’m from “don’t hit your sister” while playing outside.

I’m from sitting in the road, finding monkey gold.

I’m from the old bridge we cherished until they tore it down– the most excitement for the road.

I’m from the two-strokes going everyday of the week except Sunday.

I’m from the fear of fire and losing your house and everything you love everyday.

I’m from the smell of manure being fresh everyday.

I’m from the district in Germany who settled in York, and a district in Greece which is now in Southern Lancaster.

I’m from the moments when Flashback Friday is an annual thing.

I’m from having a new movie is not just a goal anymore, but an addition to the collection of more than one thousand.

I’m from moments when riding our bikes were one of the only freedoms we had.

I’m from a time when we did not need phones to be happy because we thought of something better to do and electronics were on a limited time.

I’m from when sneaking up the road to your grandparents’ was a crime, but the food was delicious.

I’m from where the memories are hung on the wall instead of packed away until you find them again.

I’m from a time of which you love to go to an attic to find something old to someone else, but a new treasure to you.

I’m from the mud in between your toes was a good thing.

I’m from the dirt roads that were barely ever traveled.

I’m from racing up and down the field to see who was a better rider.

I’m from fixing cars with my dad and brother everyday after school.

I’m from amazing genres of music and bands- Panic! At The Disco, Fall Out Boy, Kongos, The 80s, 90s, and Today’s.

I’m from “Dude you hit the garage, you’re not touching my fourwheeler again”.

I’m from the country which is where I was born and raised and it shaped who I am today.