And Still You Expect Me Not to Skip Gym

For those of us who have never had gymnastics in school

Here's what it's like to lose balance.

Because that's what it is

Balancing on a fence

On a fence between two expanses

The emotional expense excruciating.

Walking til my feet turn purple

Purple for the number of times someone asked me

If I'm a boy or a girl

And I rallied defiantly NO.

Imagine for a second feeling like a hateful bigot was put into a different position of power every morning.

Walking til my shoulders get sunburn red

Red for the crimson rage

That tears its way down my body, vandalizing the sense of self

That keeps me going

Walking on through the sweltering heat of battles and senatorial debates

The politics heavy on my broken skin

And that's where we begin.

 

I don't have to walk alone

But it's easy to forget when

the explanations pile up against the walls

A house divided against itself is bound to fall

United we stand, against it all,

But that's easy to forget when

Nobody seems to ask but everyone wants to know

Questions prodding at the fiber of my being

Some resepectful, some a hurricane

And I have so few answers to shield myself with

It's easy to forget when

Breathing exercises don't help my panic attacks

Instead making my binder stain my back bruise black-blue

It's easy to forget when

I only feel safe traveling before nightfall.

Why do I only feel safe traveling before nightfall?

Why do I only feel safe traveling before nightfall?

I AM VALID.

But in the dark there are no shadows to hide in.

My thoughts are a swirling mess of fumes and fear

 

I'm a war with my fate.

Predestined to have the dimensions of a box

That locks

I am trapped.

I go where the tracks

That make tracks in the sand

Abandon me beyond abandonment and

Open

Into an expanse of nothing

The edges of the world that held me up have gone away and

I am alone

And a door closes

That's a lot-it could also

Open

I see the other side of this tunnel

Although the other side is dark as night and i lose track of the track

I lose sight of my vision

I lose time

Because it could either be the middle of the night

Or it could

Open

Into something bigger

Something more like

Morning

But I'm still mourning yesterday

And the rusty gates creak

Protest

Scream out against the hinges

As slowly

I force them

Open.

 

This poem is about: 
Me
My community
Our world

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