The first time I heard the word gay
I was no more than eight years old
And the seed was planted.
I am a child of hate,
A child taught to hide
Behind the guise of righteousness
And that’s all I need to
Hate myself and
I am fearfully and wonderfully made --
And yet, God doesn’t make mistakes.
Am I a lost lamb? Am I a leoper?
Am I wondering to find the robe
To touch, the sandals to cry on,
Begging for mercy, forgiveness?
We are all children of God, I was told,
God loves us, God loves you,
God wants you,
But they don’t want me.
When I was thirteen I said for the first time,
“It’s okay to be gay,”
Timid at first, but with more confidence
It’s okay to be gay, it’s okay to be gay,
It’s okay to be gay!
I taught myself to love it, to believe it,
To tell other it’s okay, it’s okay,
It’s okay, it’s okay, it’s okay --
But I never bothered to tell
I’m not a sinner. I’m not a freak.
I’ve hated myself for too long.
Telling others they’re perfect is easy,
Telling yourself is hard.
It’s okay for you to be gay,
But it’s not okay for me.
Years were spent shoving it down,
Swallowing it and my pride,
Praying no one would find out,
Hoping it was all a terrible joke my
Brain was playing on itself,
That it would blow over.
The first time I said I was gay
My heart hammered so fast
I thought I would vomit.
(It’s okay, it’s okay, it’s okay.)
Straight people roll their eyes.
“So? It’s not a big deal--”
--but it is a big deal,
It’s a huge deal to rewrite yourself,
To tell yourself you’re real,
To remind yourself that sticks
And stones may break your bones
But words can never hurt you.
I’m more than hate, I’m more than
Reading stories about people like me
Being murdered, being attacked,
Being told they’re sick, that they’re worthless --
That I’m more than just another sinner
I AM OKAY
That I will be able to live the life I want,
That I can live with a few bumps and bruises,
That I don’t have to hate myself for wanting to
Kiss a boy,
Hug a boy,
Love a boy,
Even though I am a boy.
Being hard programmed to loathe yourself
Is hard to undo.
Every time my vision grows hazy around
A boy I want to tear my skin and
Cry, because I’m broken, because
I shouldn’t be doing this.
“I don’t feel anything,” I told everyone.
I’m in love with boys, I hid from myself.
God disappeared. I pray to Him still.
He couldn’t possibly hate me,
He couldn’t possibly make me want to
Hate myself, not when I was stitched together
It’s okay to be gay.
I’m okay (to be gay).