Who Are You?
Updated: Feb 14
Mellow down, and find a quiet place.
Who are you?
We want to offer an exercise that helps prompt a simple answer.
What you’ll need: 5 minutes of quiet, a piece of paper, and something to write with.
Have your piece of paper and pen nearby. I will prompt a memory or experience you’ve had and you’ll simply write what you remember. We will be building a list of four answers so bullet points work best. Try your best to write the first thing that comes to mind.
1. Go back to your childhood. Try to imagine your favorite place when you were a child. Look around the space and try to name as many things there as you can. How does it feel? Is it chilly, or humid where you are? Enjoy your favorite space, and write it down.
Breathe. Enjoy your favorite space, and let it go.
2. Bring your attention to your tongue. Feel the roof of your mouth, run your tongue over your molars. Perhaps you taste your saliva. Staying in your childhood, think back to your favorite meal. If you didn’t have one, perhaps think of the meal you had most often. What did it taste like? Was it a warm dish or a frozen dessert? Did it melt in your mouth, or was it chewy? Attempt to taste it again. Write it down.
Take another breath to clear your palate, we are halfway through.
3. What saying in your family stands out to you most? It doesn’t have to be a family motto, but perhaps something your parents or sibling always said to you growing up. AD Brigette recalls vivid memories of her mother saying, ”You come from those who survived." Or maybe the family saying you remember most is something you were always scolded for. Write it down.
4. Recall your friends. See them, name them. Of these friends, which one makes you feel like you are at home? It may be a friend you are close to now, or someone from your past that you haven’t spoken to in some time. Take your time. Once you’ve identified your person, describe them briefly or with one word if you can.
Look at your list of four and read it over. We have one more step. If you ended up doing a free write of sorts go through your answers and encapsulate each answer as concisely as you can.
Now before each of your answers, write the words “I am.”
Read your new poem and take a deep breath.
Keep what resonates with you. Drop what doesn’t.
This 5-minute poem activity was derived from Dr. Beverly Tatum's original version here.
Rehearsal video featuring EIE dancer Dominique McDougal