Having It BackwardsGrowing up in a dense city, solid brick buildings, the street firmly going one way, and down its side streets, streams of change: the generations of delis, cobblers, pizzerias. I was a New Yorker, my identity sewn into subway trains, savvy taxi drivers, buildings that shouldered each other, the Bronx Zoo. Later living in L.A. I was a California girl. I was the spawn of palm trees, of “I was there” Northridge earthquake T-shirts, of easy, breezy, laid back Venice Beach boardwalk strolls where mimes pantomimed, musicians played like minstrels, my identity born out of sunny golden light. And so it went. streets, states, houses, patinas and swathes of cities out of which I grew myself. I stepped in tune to their drum beats like an echo, I was the thrown shadow of bridges, architectural styles, regional accents. It all gave me paint strokes of identity. I was a flower standing atop roots of places. Not until I grew into me did I finally come to know I was the root from which my life grew I was the loom the center the core. Growing out of my own life, places are my shadow.