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LR Jul 2019
Let me melt into these walls,
And let me lie within the floorboards.
I am nothing but a whisper,
Answering to stranger's names
And existing in the margins of a
Society that rewards not the talented
But the average.

I don't take pride in calling "here"
During attendance, when my birth certificate,
Passport, and legal identity feel
Like further chips in the marble of my
Sanity.

If I were to be gifted a genie,
I would ask him not for riches
But for the basic truths 99% have,
Those who can answer a roll call with a smile
And feel safe in their state's public bathrooms.

In my dreams I am not famous or powerful
But rather the very person you would not notice
If he walked down a street
Or into a bathroom or locker room.
You would not call him slurs and you
Would not look at him twice, your brow furrowed in
Embarrassing confusion.

Until the day I look in the mirror and
Grin back I lie in wait,
Here where no one has to think twice.
I sit off in the corner unnoticeable
For fear of being wrongly categorized.

Many americans preach true freedom but I wishfully
Hear a different song ahead,
One where I no longer am in fear of
Our legislation and my classmates and one
Where I can stand,
And breathe.
LR Jul 2019
Hello little boy, grass-stained knees.
You'll grow up to be a queen,
Called only by the highest gendered words.

Hello little girl, boas and tea parties.
You'll grow up to be a ranger,
Warned not to act like a female.

Are you there, little boy?
Is it still you under the sorrow
Of looking back and seeing a stranger?

Are you there, little girl?
Can you still hear me
Under your cries for help?

Please don't despair.

No, I can't promise that
One day, you'll be you again.

Please don't go.

No, I can't tell you how
Many years you have left like this.

Goodbye little boy, cut up arms.

Goodbye little girl scissors and band-aids.

You grew up to be a someone,
But you didn't know who.

Growing up is fatal.
LR Nov 2018
We are not scarecrows.

We know this, and yet
we can be mistaken for them, on
dark nights when legal actions ****.

We are not scarecrows, because
Scarecrows are used to scare crows and we
are used to scare someone - ourselves - into staying silent.

We are Not scarecrows, but someone passing by would see
both in an equal light, not quite human but trying.

We are not scarecrows, because at least we can
Vote where scarecrows only stand but Scarecrows are not told they
Can't serve their country or use the correct locker room.

We are not scarecrows because scarecrows can't hear
Slurs and whispers behind them like caws of a bird who only needs to survive.

We are not scarecrows but maybe we are,
Reduced to sacks of lifelessness that may as well be hay because it's a lot harder to find a story with me in it then a story with scarecrows.

We don't want to be scarecrows.
LR Sep 2018
Tell me I’m crazy
Tell me the truth
Tell me I’m hell bent on approval
I slather on pride as a sticky sunscreen to try and hide the scars

Tell me I’m crazy
Tell me I stay up at night terrified
I have everything to be afraid of
Tell me I’m crazy.

I need you to tell me I’m crazy
To tell me the truth
I hide in the shadows and can’t be dragged out
Tell me I’m crazy

Tell me I’m alone
That I’m a singular ink blot in perfect cursive because
Life would be so much easier if I had an excuse for all this
Tell me I’m crazy.

Tell me it’s okay
Because at night when I lie awake
Scared of shooters and secrets and fire and friends
I need to know I have a future
Tell me everything

Tell me everything because
I’m tired of being cast to the side, the footnote of an essay, tell me everything
Because I need to know

Tell me I’m loved
Because when I sit under my desk and watch 10 become 12 in the reflection of the blade I use so often
I need to know

Tell me this is a phase
That tomorrow I can wake up
And smile and make my life
Happy and be normal
Tell me this is a phase

Tell me this is normal
That everyone goes through this
Tell me I’m alone
That I have a reason for this all
Tell me it goes away with time
That I have a future worth living
Tell me this is a phase
That I can be normal soon
Tell me everything
That you know how I feel
Tell me I’m loved
That you feel the same way
Tell me I’m crazy
Tell me that it’s okay.
Tell me the truth.

Because in the shadows I have everything to be afraid of.
Alone?
LR Sep 2018
Each of us a little machine
Our gauges and whistles tooting their songs,
Toting labels like “fragile” so they
Know not to break the already broken.
We are oiled once daily for best performance and
They check our meters to know if we’re content.
We can solve any problem, please any of them,
Just by spitting linearly out our strings of happy speech.
If they’re confused they take a peek in our
Control panel and fix what is insecure.

It seems perfect to others but the everyday schedule
Will bore us fast as we please with ease not us but them,
The time left over allowing us to get further and furthest
Trapped in our own heads -

Gone to a place that can’t be fixed quite as easily, and this
Once confused them but they’ve learned to deal with it the only way they
Know how
To ignore and continue to see us as good as new, because
Our labels and gauges say we might be but
Little do they know
The best of us own two faces and
The robotic beeps and checks and okays are built by us to
Ignore what we fear also.

There would be a bright side,
But our imperfect human motherboards
Cannot Compute.
LR Jun 2018
They tell me to be proud,
but little do they know that Pride is a deadly sin and even deadlier if I walk through the wrong alleyway.

They tell me to be confident,
but little to they know that hands-in-my-pockets-hunched-over has hid me my whole life.

They tell me to be loud,
but little do they know that disappearing quietly has kept me alive all these years.

They tell me to speak up,
But little do they know that masking who I am has allowed me to move in this world
As If I Am Free.

They tell me to be proud but pride is confidence and confidence is being loud and being loud is speaking up and speaking up

is

Dangerous? Dangerous.

They tell me it's okay,
they'll be fine,
But how could they know? They haven't
faced the fear of knowing the unlimited know -

- Secrets spilled as blood over middle school halls -

They tell me to be proud.

They tell me to be proud, as if
confirming the masses can fix all that I've broken -

-Silent shards over ***** linoleum -

They tell me to be proud.

They tell me to be proud and I nod,
breaking glass and spilling blood and
maybe one day I will.

Maybe one day I'll speak up
loud and confident,
the terror of facing them left behind, my
shining clean face proud.

But until then,
They tell me to be proud.
They say and tell and demand me to be proud.
They tell me to be proud.

Dangerous? Dangerous.
Deadly? Deadly.
Shards.
Sins.

Pride.
Shoutout to Those People Who Make Me Write This Poem. You know who you are.
LR Jun 2018
Constantly fighting.
Sometimes it’s easier just to give in.
To stay silent, save your voice, don’t
Shout into the coming gales.

Running against the wind,
We all get pushed back sometimes,
Doubting whether it would do any good.
We keep quiet, terrified of speaking up.

But child.
Telling truths is the light switch,
The calm after a storm.

Follow your heart. Breathe in, breathe out.
Make your own wind.

Shout it from mountaintops,
Scream it in storms.
Whisper it in the cool dark of the night.

It’s okay. I am too.
I’m trans. I’m bi.
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