An Open Palm

Fowzia Karimi moved from Oakland, California to Denton, Texas in 2014, deep in grief following the death of her mother. In Texas she found an unexpected, pervasive warmth and kindness among the community, one that not only helped her to navigate the “vast foggy wilderness” of grief, but also to face her own cancer diagnosis and treatment.

I have just come out of the other side of a long and excruciating year of treatment, cancer-free but still suffering from the treatment’s brutal assault on my body. Grateful is not a word that comes to mind often during cancer treatment, but I regularly felt grateful my journey took place here, in Texas. That at every turn I was surrounded by, and my pain cushioned by, tenderness and warmth, optimism and generosity.

Source: Texas Highways
Published: Apr 28, 2022
Length: 11 minutes (2,922 words)

Getaway Driver

Did her grandpa meet Bonnie and Clyde? In this emotional essay, Lauren Hough attempts to find out — but eventually realizes it doesn’t matter either way.

Downstairs, in a hallway, are the framed newspaper clippings to remind me why I’m here—Bonnie and Clyde and Grandpa Chuck. My grandpa, thankfully, isn’t mentioned in the clippings. He wouldn’t be. From what I can tell, if his story’s true, he was just a little kid.

Source: Texas Highways
Published: Mar 1, 2022
Length: 12 minutes (3,135 words)

With Whomever Will Have Me

“Homophobia is a reality I faced firsthand growing up, which has led to my complicated relationship with my hometown, its people, and its broader culture. When I moved to Austin, I wanted to strip myself of all that and do away with both the perception and the reality of my upbringing. But every other weekend I find myself helplessly, lovingly returning to its simulacrum—the Broken Spoke.”

 

Source: Texas Highways
Published: Dec 22, 2021
Length: 11 minutes (2,778 words)

Cresting the Wave

“A surfer comes to grips with a dark family secret born from the swells near Bob Hall Pier.”

Author: Joe Hagan
Source: Texas Highways
Published: Oct 28, 2021
Length: 13 minutes (3,307 words)

The Original Cowboys

“In those days, a day in the life of a vaquero began early and often ended in pain. In this part of South Texas the Spanish once called El Desierto de los Muertos, or The Desert of the Dead, the summer heat is like a blowtorch, and the land, thick with mesquite and cactus, can rip a rider’s legs apart without the right protection.”

Source: Texas Highways
Published: Aug 26, 2021
Length: 11 minutes (2,834 words)

Feel Right at Home

“Now I live near Brushy Creek instead of the Seine or the Pacific, and I’m not the first to make that sharp midlife turn from the city to the suburbs. “

Source: Texas Highways
Published: Apr 7, 2021
Length: 12 minutes (3,029 words)

On Getting Lost

A journey through the Big Thicket of Texas.

Source: Texas Highways
Published: Feb 1, 2020
Length: 9 minutes (2,457 words)

The Stars at Night

Texas has some of the country’s highest nighttime light emission, and concenred Texans are working hard to save their night skies from the effects of light pollution.

Source: Texas Highways
Published: Dec 1, 2019
Length: 10 minutes (2,687 words)