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B E E N  T H E R E:  D O I N G   I T   M Y   W A Y

Lyndsey, the poet

"I am not going to hide my true
identity. It makes me who I am."

Teen Editorial Board member, Kendra Congdon
interviews Lyndsey K., the poet.

April 1999

14 year old Lyndsey is a teen poet with very definite ideas about life and being a young creative person. Her writing has helped her sort out her feelings as she has dealt with some very difficult family issues. She first came to the attention of Talk City's The InSite when she submitted a poem about Tupac Shakur, the slain rapper.  

The InSite: How would you describe your life thus far?

Lyndsey: You mean, all of my life in general? Like...to summarize it? I'd have to say...more difficult and complicated than most 14 year olds. I've had a lot of weight on my shoulders my whole life.

TI: Weight from what?

Lyndsey: 1) My dad's drug & alcohol abuse... throughout my whole life. 2) Me having to take the place of my mom (for my little sister) because my mom would work and my dad would be serving to his addictions. 3) Being depressed & feeling bad about myself. I also went through puberty and it was really hard for me, I don't truly know why, but it was very hard to grow up for me. Also, this is sort of personal, but I have a drug problem myself. It's been hell dealing with it.

TI: That's a lot for anyone to deal with! How have you dealt with these problems?

Lyndsey: I have to look up to. I listen to Tupac Shakur's and Jimi Hendrix's words (in their music) and it helps me deal. I definitely look up to those two. They helped me through so much.

I listen to Tupac Shakur's and Jimi Hendrix's words (in their music)...

TI: Why do Tupac and Jimi Hendrix appeal to you? Why do you like their music?

Lyndsey: I like them because they're original (unlike Puff Daddy & Biggie Smalls-just for comparison). Because They're not people-pleasers, they do their music for themselves. Not living to please anyone - just like me :-)

Tupac
by Lyndsey K.

Today, I am much stronger, I don't
know what happened, but I grew.
Listening to Tupac. It made me strong.
Being devoted, listening to the
lyrics of his song. He made me grow
up. We had quite same lives.

He went through so much, in such little
time. He had such a "tough"
attitude. He inspired me not to be that
shy-small-town-girl anymore. He
taught me how to take his attitude and
individualize it to me. I became
him, he became me.

Tupac, you helped me through so much --
yet we didn't even touch. You
kept me alive when I wanted to die.
Your words so strong they sometimes
made me cry.

Your sayings are my bible. Keep your
head up, well that kept me from
dying...that made me who I am today--
living for me,
not to please every playa-hata around.

You changed me 'Pac, from being that
plain white-girl from Maine --The girl
that blended in, living to please
everyone else, to the woman who
doesn't care what anyone else thinks.

Tupac, you are my god. I know you
lived for yourself, your mother &
trying to change the gangster ways.
Trying to wake up those folks who are
in it for the money -- or who knows?

I never had the chance to meet you Pac,
but if I did I wouldn't bow to your
feet--you taught me not to -- I would
look at you and say, "Pac, you taught me well...
you are my role model..."
Don't even deny, you're
a very inspirational guy. Pac, your
voice so strong...It makes me cry.

But, we both knew you were gonna die.
"May you rest in peace..." Then I
would kiss you on the forehead and give
you a hug good-bye.

This may not impact you Pac, coming
from a middle-class-white girl from
Maine, but I just want you to know
you're an inspiration, and I simply
adore you.

Why did you have to die?

In memory of Tupac Amaru Shakur, 1971-1996
"Live by the gun -- die by the gun."

TI: When did you begin writing poetry?

Lyndsey: Back when I was suicidal... basically to let my feelings out because I didn't have anyone else to talk to. I'd say, back in 5th grade. Now my feelings on life are... it's hard, keep your head up and a bright day will be in the future. Basically - I love life. When I think my life is bad... I think, "I wonder how many people (like the kids dying from Cancer & AIDS) would love to have my life" and that makes me think how good it is.

TI: What is the message you're trying to send through your poetry?

Lyndsey: Nothing really. I like to put poetry up on the net so other teens can read it and relate.
To know they're not alone. And most important - to make them feel better.

TI: What do you think teens could gain from hearing about your experiences and from reading your poetry?

Lyndsey: I think they could gain a lot of self-confidence and a feeling of warmth and I think they wouldn't feel that much alone anymore.

I think they [other teens] could gain a lot of self-confidence...and I think they wouldn't feel that much alone anymore.

TI: What is going through your mind when you write poetry? What are a few emotions?

Lyndsey: Mad. Sad. Confused. But yet relief because I'm finally letting my feelings out.

TI: How do you express your individualism?

Lyndsey: The way I dress, the type of culture I'm into, my personality, my friends, and what I like to do. I'm VERY individual :-) Most people in my town are like, "followers" they just follow what only the town can offer. I take advantage and make my own little village in my town. Individualize it to me. Not just be from that town and be plain-Jane. You know?

TI: Amen to that sister!

Lyndsey: HeHe :-)

TI: Do you have any philosophies or sayings to live by?

Lyndsey: Keep your head up. Keep it real (I know that sounds like some "gangster - saying" but truly it's not... it means to be yourself and not be fake. Keep it REAL.) Those are both Tupac's sayings, hehe :-)

TI: What would you tell a teen if they were going through what you've been through so far? Would you give them other advice or tips?

Lyndsey: That other people's problems aren't your own. Live for yourself - not to please anyone else. Find your inside self and become it. Keep your head up. And that there's always a bright day ahead. :-)

That other people's problems aren't your own. Live for yourself - not to please anyone else. Find your inside self and become it. Keep your head up...there's always a bright day ahead.

Read more of Lyndsey's poetry

 

 

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