© 2020 California.com All Rights Reserved
Last month, we asked our community of readers to share their favorite stories about California—whether it was recalling a special memory, remembering a person who inspired them, or describing a beloved place. Here are several of the poems we received about the Golden State. Stay tuned for more California Voices stories later this month, and if you’re interested in contributing to our site, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with a brief explanation of what you want to write about.
A golden light touches California and makes it shineIt shines off the Golden Gate.It reflects off the poppies and redwoods,touches the endless beaches and waves,makes the water shimmer and sparkle.It illuminates the gemstones hidden underground,giving the jewels a special glow.This golden light also feeds the luscious vegetation, crops, and produceever so carefully grown.But, sometimes this light cannot always touch the Golden State.Fires blaze, cutting off the golden light,shrouding it in thick smoke,hiding it, so it cannot see or shine.But, as the smoke and dust clear, this golden light returns and shines onto the land.As far as the eye can see, the golden rays touch the Golden State.From endless beaches to the mighty redwoods.From the sparkling waves to the glowing gemstones.From the luscious vegetation to the prodigious Golden Gate.This is what I think of when I think about California,the Golden State.
— Alyssa Nakagawa
Driving down Broadway, small-town feelParking at the Plaza, enjoy a nice mealSaying hi to familiar faces on the bike pathCommunity coming together in the wildfire aftermathRolling vineyards, NASCAR races, Bear Flag revoltBeauty, entertainment, history, these things denoteTracing my childhood through the winding streetsOff to school, recitals, sports practice with my cleatsA town full of memories, family, and friendsThe importance in my life truly transcendsWatercolor orange-red amid the day's closeSonoma close to my heart, yes she knows.
— Kylee Andersen
I want it to rainI want it to rain in CaliforniaI want it to rain so hard that I can’t see the ground anymoreI want to build a boat and sail down the hills of San Francisco in the rainBy myselfI want to jump the boat and swim in the watersBy myselfI want it to rainI want it to rain in CaliforniaI want it to rain so hard that when you see me walking on the street, you can’t tell if those are tears or raindrops running down my cheekI want soaked shoes and clothingBy myselfI want to dance to the music in my soul in the rainI want to feel the rain seep into my clothing and shoesBy myselfI want it to rainI want it to rain in CaliforniaI want it to rain so hard while I stand in the shower with my window open. No music playingJust the sound of the rain in the background and the hot steam, rising up to combine with the coolness of condensation from the outside worldBy myselfI want it to rainI want it to rain in CaliforniaI want it to rain so hard while I lie in bed, fresh out the shower with a blanket fresh out the dryerI want to lie in the dark and listen to the rainAnd breathe … just breatheYes…By myself
— Olivine Gabbro
California poppies line the coastline,waving in the sea breezeI love this state of mine. Colors of many have come to this landin sight of freedom, the “dream” because everyone can...have a dream to be heard, a dream to be seen, everyone wants the “American Dream.”California, a place where democracy growsWe help so many, everyone knows.Poppies grow in speed and produce for the worldMy hopes, my dreams since I was a little girlDaughter of an American born and an immigrant,I’ve always strived to be…an example to others as a good citizen, a wife, a mother indeed.I raise my children with good intent to be the best,give their all, give back to circumvent.Not only am I a Californian, an American thus proud,but I’ll give back to my community every day as long as I’m around.A proud teacher that has given her passion for years,I’ve given myself to my students to tears.I only hope that with our future ahead,We can come together, blue or red.To help our future, set examples to see, our children are watching as we are all coming to be. Let us grow like the poppies willing and free, and spread the love of democracy.
— Elizabeth Nakagawa
In a poignant letter, a Californian reflects on what the Golden State means to her....Read more
A Los Angeles resident recalls her favorite California memories and shares why she loves the state....Read more
Los Angeles is home to beautiful roads that are best seen by motorcycle. Here are the best motorcycle routes for …...Read more
A San Francisco local dishes on the best women-owned businesses in her neighborhood, from bespoke shops to top restaurants....Read more