ECHO (a poem)

the echo of my ancestors resounds through me,
a drum that beats within my blood.

sometimes i cannot feel it, but then my heart
untethers, escapes with my lungs.

and yet my ancestors warn me with their stories,
that scream within my addled brain,

but as i stand and listen on the precipice,
i only hear my silent shame


Thank you, my dear readers, for joining me on the fifth day of this poetry experience. Today’s subject matter has been my favorite subject so far, so I’m really excited to dive into this poem and talk more with you guys about what the heck I’m saying.

Have you ever stood in the middle of the desert and screamed as loud as you can? You pray no one’s listening, because you don’t want to be a weirdo and alarm anyone, but it’s a chance for you to hear nothing but the sound of your own voice. And chances are, depending on if you’re like me and on the edge of a canyon, your voice will come back to you… Warbled, but familiar, and you’re left with a few seconds of echoes.

Echoes are cool. Echolocation and bats are cool too. But today I’m going metaphorical. When I wrote this poetry, I’d just come from class in which a girl had been dogging her father’s political views in front of everyone. To me, this was unacceptable and inappropriate. While it is completely respectable to disagree with someone, to intentionally slander one’s parent in class because of a disagreement is disrespectful.

And, in typical Katie fashion, a poem stemmed from my anger at the situation.

I was born, the child of two amazing parents. While I do not always see eye-to-eye with them (and they certainly don’t see eye-to-eye with me all the time), I still find intense value and respect for them. And I know that within my blood runs my genetic makeup that was given to me from them, the gift of life.

Therefore, the echoes of my ancestors’ decisions run through me. When my heart gallops in my chest from nerves, it’s a leftover relic of my ancestors’ own nervousness. When I’ll fall in love one day, I’m sure the excitement that rushes through my system will be similar to what was once felt my parents, grandparents, and so forth.

We can try to erase history, and we can try to erase our ancestry, but we simply can’t. (Of course, one can try, but the truth will always remain.) And so, as I think of that girl in my class, I wonder if she realizes that the blood that flows within her is a gift of the person she disrespected publicly, the person she shamed publicly.

Echoes only remain with us for a short period of time. Eventually, I’m going to have a child, and pass on my genetic makeup to him or her. And when I die one day, the only evidence of my choices will remain within my sons and daughters. I want my echo to mean something, but I also don’t want to sit and pretend that I am perfect.

That is why we should humble ourselves and thank goodness we can learn from those who came before us…


Well, I think I wrote more than I intended on that section. While I really do support freedom of speech, I’m not a fan of tearing one’s family down publicly. I just really wish college campuses these days facilitated meaningfulrespectful conversation instead of one-sided, disrespectful conversation. I could write so much more on this, and maybe I will one day.

Well, sorry for this rant. It is concluded now. Only positive energy for the rest of today! Hope you all are doing well. ❤

Until tomorrow,

-Katie Kay.


23 thoughts on “ECHO (a poem)”

  1. And the fact is, our parents and ancestors affect us even if we don’t recognize these effects. In the case of that girl in your class, her fathers view have in many ways shaped her unknowlingly and even if she tries to reject it.

    I come from a family of immigrants, but at this point my family has been living in the US for 3 generations. Lately, I have been wondering how this past affects my family and myself. And I think that wanderlust is written in our blood, so much so we don’t understand it.

    Thanks for sharing! I am loving your poems 🙂


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