Patch of green pawpaw 

down by the spring

for a child’s forest park


Will live on this land forever

for the story bearers 

to listen to


if we still know 

the custard-fruit’s name

when we taste it again.


Human change is climate 


The farmer says

teach care for the land

at a young age,


and the land will care

for you for generations

ripe tomatoes, purple okra


pawpaw as far as 

the eye can see

to nourish you back to health.


I wrote this poem to honor my experience at NPR’s Next Gen Radio Project at STLPR. I was very inspired by the image of pawpaw at Pearson’s farm, and his words of hope for young people. Phi Global is a beautiful farm with lots of wide open land and forest. So much green and life is growing there. My time at the project with Eli as my mentor was an immense learning experience in the field of journalism. I learned that this is what I want to do in life. I want to be a storyteller with audio as my tool to get there. I felt excited every morning to come to STLPR. I didn’t feel depleted or exhausted at the end of the day. I felt supported by Doug, Traci, and Eli in ways that inspire me to keep going on this path. I came face to face with many of my insecurities as a journalist, but I felt uplifted, seen, and heard. Most importantly, I learned that climate change is human change. During this time, people are having to adapt in unique and sustainable ways.