Friday, March 23, 2012


St. Mark's Place
Crowd of male voices
teenagers chanting
"Bitch! Bitch! Bitch!"
A young woman's voice breaks through:
"Let me go!"
All of this happens
out of my sight
Behind the protection of a
parked box truck.

How Blessed

How blessed to feel
at home in my own skin
For years, so worried
over minutiae, like
the proper way to carry schoolbooks, and
the masculine way to walk
How I covered up my body
in the South Florida heat
Covered my soft curves
in denim and leather layers
Now how blessed
not to hide
unembarrassed for my soft hands
and to no longer fear
the natural sway of hips
to take off the mask
To become
How blessed it is
to be myself.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Please Don't Ask

Please don't ask me if I'm going to
"cut it off",
it’s none of your damned business, and it
reduces me to
an object of
“genital dissonance”.
Don't ask me who I'll be tomorrow,
I barely know
who I am today.
Ask me instead, how does it feel?
What was it like to be
forced into boyhood,
(then manhood,)
to have been made to don some kind of
learned masculinity,
all the while fearing the fragilty of my disguise.
Or, ask me what it's like to be a
double agent
a secret spy in the
war of the sexes;
I'll happily give away all my learned secrets,
see, I've always been kind of an antiwar activist!
what was it like to grow up in a world that told me
time and again that it's
better to pretend,
rather than to risk anyone finding out the horrible truth.
And finally,
ask me what it feels like, at the age of 43,
to grow tired of pretending, and I'll gladly tell you,
it's like
taking off a pair of someone else's shoes,
shoes that have always been 2 sizes
too small.

Monday, March 05, 2012

When I'm An Old Woman

When I’m an old woman, I’ll wear denim shirts

and big turquoise rings on my

tanned, knotted fingers

When I’m an old woman, I’ll paint in my garden

mixing red dust from the earth

into oil, and light

I’ll grow out my gray hair

way down past my ass, and be

“that strange old woman, who barely ever comes to town”.

When I’m an old woman, I’ll laugh about the time

when everyone around me, thought that I was a man.

When I’m an old woman, I’ll smile at the mirror,

because the woman smiling back at me, knows

who I am.

I'm Trying To Invent A Brand New Language

I’m trying to invent a brand new language
to tell you about the place that I’m from
but I can’t use words such as
female, or male,
you’d never understand how they don’t apply.
So I’ll tell you instead how I
come from a marshland:
a soft place between
two fortified nations with
impassable borders and
natal requirements for citizenship.

If I tried to explain how I’d been handed
the wrong disguise
by the border coyotes when I came to this place, or
if I told you I don’t have a green card
and that I feared discovery
every second of every day,
maybe you’d see,
maybe you’d understand, how
try as I do just to fit in,
and try as I have all of my life,
none of that matters.
I’m just not from here.

And I wish I could tell you
how lonely it is here
when nobody else can
speak my language:
a language that
even I have yet to learn.