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What if We Were Born in Nebraska

by Matilda Z. Halen

I was born in Walla Walla

My father left his sunglasses in Omaha

At the airport

He said, 

I am going back to Russia 

Moscow, Moscow

I hate your mother’s Chinatown and her Sui Sin Far collection  

My child,

You haven’t seen a snowfall with me in America


What if we were born in Nebraska

I was ten and you were sixteen

I broke my leg when I was fifteen

You didn’t know me

The girl who cried a lot 

The roses in Nantucket 

Blooming under the sunlight 

Red, white, and blue 


My mother took me to Nebraska 


I saw my first snowfall in America 

I never came back to Walla Walla

About the Author

Matilda Z. Halen is a writer based in Washing, DC. She moved to the United States when she was a teenager. She once received a full scholarship to study great books at St. John’s College, Annapolis, later she attended The College of Wooster at 2018 to study Political Science and Theater. Her short story, Midlife Crisis, has appeared on New English Review, November issue 2019. You can find her on twitter @mydearmatilda

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