The Place You Left Me

I said it, please don’t forget it.

I built up enough courage,

so why is it that you think it’s something I’ll regret?

I identify with the men

who chopped off their sex organs

and taped them on their chest,

because being black and male in this world

was just too difficult.

I identify with the little girl who puts on basketball shorts

instead of a dress for her seventh birthday,

while her mother hibernates in the kitchen,

praying to all the gods that her little girl isn’t gay,

that this is just a phase that’ll pass like the seasons.

My life provider

thinks he’s my decider.

He talks about what society will do to me,

as if I’m a box of recalled produce.

I wish he’d understand my desire in life

isn’t to have mass appeal,

but self thrill.

To have an identity and to identify are two different routes (things).

Identity is an opinionated perspective given to you at birth,

by society;

to identify is a self-driven action


Yes Mom, Pop,

I identify with lesbian.

This does not mean—I’ll be a strung out freak

in a Motel 6.

This does not mean I’m not


Please understand—

I’ve walked in places where trouble was me,

I’ve roamed in spaces where there was no light.

You can read my future off my palm,

beat me with sticks

till my skin turns purple and blue,

but never will I ever walk backwards into the place

you left me.

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