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“Maybe I Could Save Myself By Writing”

As a Latinx teen in Chicago, he belonged nowhere—until he found his voice

Illustration: Austin MacDonald

WWhen I was a teenager, I felt like I belonged nowhere. I know it’s a cliché: Ni de aqui, ni de alla, but damn if I didn’t feel that. I walked around with my head to the ground. I was just trying to get through each day.



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José Olivarez

José Olivarez is the son of Mexican immigrants and the author of Citizen Illegal, forthcoming from Haymarket Books.