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Immigrant from Indiana

October 14, 2015


Immigrant from Indiana


by Alice Jane-Marie Massa



I am an immigrant from Indiana.

In 1991, for a very good job,

I was planted here

in this Land of Wisconsin.

Between the shores of Lake Michigan

and the drawbridges over the Milwaukee River,

my plant–a perennial–

has blossomed each of 24 years

with those beautiful blooms

of Nostalgia.


I have been told

that my blossoms

have Hoosier accents

and that the leaves are shaped

like the nineteenth state.

The fragrance of this perennial plant

changes from sweet clover to grapes,

from the smells of an Italian kitchen to the scent of an Indiana autumn.


I am fortunate

because my Nostalgia plant even blooms

in the bleakest of blizzards,

during a freezing fog,

in the midst of dry leaves

taking flight in a high wind.


My Nostalgia plant

has the most brilliant blooms

during the singing of “Back Home Again in Indiana”

at the opening ceremonies of the Indy 500 Race,

during Clinton’s Little Italy Festival

over Labor Day Weekend,

during Parke County’s Covered Bridge Festival

in mid October,

and most especially

during the holiday season.


“How often do you water this plant

you call Nostalgia?” a stranger asks.

“How much rain is required?”

The only moisture it requires is

the tears for my homeland–

my Indiana.


“How deep do you plant

this Nostalgia?” the stranger persists.

For the best results,

I planted

my sweet Nostalgia

just as deep as

my heart.



Happy Autumn!

Celebrate Dictionary Day on this Friday, October 16!

Alice and Zoe


October 14, 2015, Wednesday



From → Uncategorized

  1. Fran Rayce permalink

    Beautiful, Alice, and full of the sentiments I often feel here in Michigan. After forty plus years I still “Dream about the moonlight on the Wabash, and long for my Indiana home”. How clever to capture those ideas in such an interesting analogy. That garden of perennials certainly has been nurtured and preserved by sunny thoughts as well as longing tears. Thanks fo sharing.

    • Fran–How wonderful to receive such a lovely comment from you so soon after I posted this Indiana poem! Knowing that this poem touched a fellow Hoosier was very gratifying. I always appreciate your comments, but most especially on a poem like this one. How fortunate we are to be able to visit Indiana periodically! I am surprised that my grandparents did not return to visit their homeland in Italy. I had never even heard them talk about dreaming of a visit to Levone. Take care–Alice

  2. Of all the poems you have written, Alice, I think this one is my favorite! The unique concept of the Nostalgia plant describes beautiful images with heartfelt love and sincerity. Your creative thoughts always amaze me! I admire your great writing talent!
    Love, Mary

    • Mary–Many thanks! I am glad to know that you like this poem so much. If I were still making decoupage plaques, I would have a piece of wood cut in the shape of Indiana and decoupage the poem onto the plaque.

      Take care–AZ

  3. Excellent, as always, Alice!

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