Made in Texas




I’m still as fragile

as a daughter

dressed up for

Olan Mills with

Dorothy Hamill

hair and highlights.

Smile as wide as

the schoolbus wearing

grandfather’s green

stone set with a

store bought jewelry

making machine and

mailed across the

miles. Held by a

slender gold chain

over Fall’s best turtle

neck. Tilt your chin

and grin, girl. Put

your elbows like

so across this

log while a cool

New England

autumn is draped

down your back.

Shift your shoulders.

Hold your head

high because you

were Made In Texas

no matter what

forest or fauna

they pull back

behind you.

Look at your

life through this

lens: It is hard

and far away.

Be strong. Put

some more pecans

in your pockets

when you get

home. See if

you can crush

them with white

Keds. Go to

the beach after

school today to

wash away his

whiskey in the

waves. Drown

out her drama

in the dunes.


There’s nothing

so bitter you

can’t bite back.

No place so

sad you can’t

save it.




Lorena Parker Matejowsky is a resident of Central Florida but spent her first thirty years in Texas. Her poems have also appeared or are forthcoming in Rattle, Rise Up Review, Sinking City, The Mackinac, Mothers Always Write, Rust + Moth, Poydras Review and more. She juggles work, kids and enrollment in the Creative Writing MFA program at University of Central Florida, where she read for The Florida Review. Her work is informed by the South, especially its Gulf Coast, and narratives of feminine identity and faith. Twitter @LorieMatejowsky