THRU Project’s First Poetry Contest
THRU Project’s inaugural poetry contest, held in memory of local journalist Paula Price, took place on April 14th at the beautiful Eye of the Beholder Art Gallery on the city’s east side. Twenty poems were submitted by current and former foster youth. The three winning poets were Heidi Leal, Alizaha Gonzales and Melanie Gonzales. Melanie’s poem, which reflects on how her love for her young son has changed her life, is shared below.
“Home at Last”
Growing up I thought I would have a picture-perfect family but that wasn’t the case.
I grew up in foster homes and group homes and was constantly replaced.
I was surrounded by groups of children, different age, race, and ethnicity.
All this moving around and I never had no stability.
No family visits, no hugs, or kisses.
I felt so abandoned why didn’t anyone listen.
So many years I wish I had a normal childhood like other kids my age I was so lonely and unhappy I couldn’t explain.
Assigned therapist, caseworkers, attorneys the list can go on but who would really miss me if I was gone…
At 17 my life turned around for the better, I gave birth to my son, and I knew the first time I laid eyes on him I would love him forever.
He became my purpose in life the reason to get up every day and fight to achieve my goals, all along I never knew he was my home.
I will never let you go a day feeling how I felt all those years I will always be by your side and wipe your tears.
I will be all the things my mother couldn’t be for me, that is guaranteed.
I searched everywhere to find this unconditional love.
Thank you for blessing me to be your mother, my sweet Eli you are like no other.
I love you son.