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A Poem for You

Filling this pen with ink made from tears (of joy, love)

spilling it across this page in the hope that

my words will act as some form of protection—

a talisman for you, my dear friend. A talisman

for anyone who has been told they are not enough

as they are. Brown, transgender, bisexual,

Christian. The parts that are sum,

but not the whole. For those of us whose voices

are hoarse from speaking, whispering, screaming

into the void of squeaky wheels determined

to keep all the grease for themselves.

Teal taffeta, ball cap tilted just so,

sporting a goatee, eyeliner flicked

to perfection. You look like you

and you’ve never looked better. Thank you

for letting me in. My friend, share who you are

with the world—in the places you feel safest. Real talk,

that should be everywhere without restriction.

Your well-being is a currency worth going to battle for.

So, I will. Tell me about the monsters hiding

under your bed and I will stroke your hair

until you fall asleep at night.

Anyone who knows you and turns a blind eye,

lacks vision. Find the friends who smile

at your penchant for corny jokes, sing along

to Kelly Clarkson at karaoke, and cry at the ending

to Bring It On. You know, people who honour you

for all that you are. Be that voice for yourself

when you can. When you can’t, mine is yours

for the taking. I will keep writing for the day

when living in your identity does not force

you into bravery, but is simply a given. After all,

you’re the best at being you, so why

would you be anyone else?

You are not to be filtered through the lens

of brazenly displayed ignorance. Here,

we celebrate genders and sexualities

expanding beyond the notion of binary.

Here, we see colour and laud every shade there is,

applaud those with faith who use it to support,

not exclude. We live out loud and find each other,

embracing in our individuality. The dangers are real

so please rest up, my friend, knowing that I will keep

speaking, whispering, screaming. Beside you,

in front of you, behind you, you are not alone.


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