top of page


Ordinance of Fidelity: Even though she is real, children of bigotry refuse to accept her as true.

red apple petals of peeled skin spoil as they flutter

from my neck, polluting the air with necrosis—


a lithe bruise snakes and slithers

out of the scalpel incision on my throat,


glides in and out of my breast pockets,

around my gilded waist of gold, and metastasizes:

a medusa’s decapitated head at my labia,

forged from falsetto screams—scars—the cost


for my hips to curve with feminine folds of skin, implanted

joy that accentuates the inverted apple-skin vagina:


the tissue carved into lips so that it may whisper without

words that there is no longer a chain hooked to my groin;


no longer a snake that will petrify if I dare look;

no longer an excuse for people to exclude me from their love.



Yet you promise that I am pretty as you kiss

me, but as you caress my clit, you act


like it’s no more than an imitation, the eye

of a slit excavated from flesh and bones


you insist are male, even if you take pleasure

in caressing them and declare me a woman


to every stranger we cross, with every breath

you could instead spend making love to me.


You plead me to not call myself trans, cause to you

the term makes my transness true; the texture of the word


festers in your mouth, makes you believe I wasn’t born with sugar,

even though I was born with just as much beauty as anyone else.


You used to tell me I was beautiful with an atomic force

before I told you who I was. What changed?


Venus Drowning.jpg
bottom of page