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Thinks & Inks

By @astrid_hartman

753 Miles Away

Ah, Tennessee

So far away from the cornfields of the Midwest

You are like 

A new pair of shoes

That don’t fit just right,

My feet sliding around,

The laces coming undone too easily

 

I knew that moving wasn’t going to be easy

But I didn’t know it was going to be so…

Hard. 

Tennessee, you are beautiful.

I love your rolling hills,

Thick forests 

And amazing wildlife.

The winding roads, warm summers

And delicate expanse of wildflowers

 

But I miss Nebraska.

 

I miss the locust tree,

The crabapples,

The concrete,

The potholes from snow,

Streetlights,

Downtown’s sunrises 

 

I miss my mother’s hugs,

My dad’s corny jokes,

My sister’s never-ending love.

 

I miss my grandmother’s smile,

My grandparents’ farm

 

I miss being five minutes away

From all of my friends,

Now it’s 13 hours.

I miss just being able to touch them, 

To feel them,

To run my hands through my sister’s hair,

To smell my mother cooking in the kitchen,

Hearing my dad mow the grass.

 

Now that everyone’s so far away 

And this Midwest girl

Feels so out of place 

In a Southerner’s world,

I value what I did not before…

 

That every day I could come home 

And I hug my mom,

Kiss my sister, 

Laugh with my dad.

 

I miss so many things 

Now that I’m away

And FaceTime 

Does not do it justice 

 

I miss them. 

I miss Nebraska with every fiber of my soul,

Every thumping of my heart.

My friends back home don’t understand 

Why I miss Nebraska.

Nebraska? That flat, corn place?

Why would I miss that?

 

Because it is something familiar in a new, strange world.

A world where coleslaw and sweet tea are served at restaurants 

Where everyone says “y’all” instead of “you guys”,

Where places are named after war generals,

And houses saw battles of the Civil War 

 

I miss everything. 

 

And I know

That as time goes on,

I will grow into Tennessee.

The shoes will start to feel right,

I won’t feel so out of place.

That day will come, I know.

 

But Nebraska,

In all its simple beauty,

Will always have this girl’s heart.  

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