People try to say that homophobia is dead, that people who aren’t straight have nothing to worry about. Teens who have been kicked out of their homes because they weren’t straight would beg to differ. The people who are being beaten for it would beg to differ. Gabriel Fernandez an eight year old who was tortured and murdered because his mother’s boyfriend thought he was gay would beg to differ. It doesn’t matter how old you are or how you were raised we are all human beings who deserve respect. You don’t get to decide if you are straight. You don’t get to decide if you are cis. What you do get to choose is what you do and what you think of others. We all have the right to life liberty and pursuit of happiness and your views will not change that. Religion and government are separate no matter how much you want them to go together. People who are not straight exist and aren’t going away. People who aren’t cis exist and aren’t leaving. We exist and you aren’t getting rid of us.
it’s an old saying,
as a little girl,
i just thought it meant
blisters from flats,
or pierced ears
it’s funny how much truth
a silly old phrase can hold.
this is drilled into our brains
beauty comes at a cost,
that roots itself
little by little,
as little girls grow.
the pangs of hunger
you willfully ignore,
because pretty girls
when you pinch
at the fat
on your waist
your wrist even,
until skin breaks.
a pounding headache
trying to study
but you can’t focus
because your stomach can’t comprehend why it’s so empty.
shivering so hard your ribs ache,
always so cold
freezing to the bone
because seeing your bones
is all you care about anymore.
because pretty hurts,
it’s worth it.
and wanting to be pretty
into insatiable perfectionism.
never thin enough.
never light enough.
you know you’re dying
but you can’t stop,
pretty is supposed to hurt,
your purple fingernails,
hair falling out in clumps.
staring at size 0 models,
hours on end,
ashamed you don’t look like a goddamn stick.
page after glossy page
celebrities for slimming down,
and throwing up.
is this what we are teaching?
teaching little girls
that thinner = better.
lighter = prettier.
in every way you can hate yourself.
and little girls
are avid students.
studying every flaw reflected in the mirror,
learning to read nutrition labels,
learning everything diet culture has to teach,
until they’re 68 pounds in a hospital bed.
a little more
and you’ll be perfect,
a little more
and you’ll be worth it.
like panicking every time you look in the mirror.
and sometimes the hurt
is just too much
and you wonder,
was it really worth
A little girl wakes up in a part of the world god can’t see
She’s hungry and hopeless.
She walks with her mom down a mud road loitered with pebbles and glass.
Home is where the heart his but her home breaks her heart.
It’s her and her mother in a self sought refuge.
They’re escaping a country where the government’s eyes are only on its money and its people are left there to rot.
There’s a train that’ll train you to stay in your place
A coyote that’ll jump at the chance to growl, howl, and bite
The little girl begs for a drink in a desert deserted where the american dreams of the non americans flourish.
All she can drink has dried up, but she has to go on
All she can feel is the sun
All she can see is the future
The land of the free charges a toll to go in
It’s a place filled with hope and riddled with sin.
Welcome to me, him, you and us but all us are other than
A place where the man in charge doesn’t want you here and doesn’t want to hear what you’ve done for here or what you’re doing here.
A place where everyone’s all over the place
A place plagued with negativity for years and years,
This place will chew you up and kick you out once it gets all it can receive.
A place where you get portrayed as a murderer a rapist and a thief.
Are you sure you want to come in?
Welcome little girl, you didn’t say thank you but you know what you’re welcome little girl.
We are the land of free but your time here is going to cost you.
How’d you get here anyways?
Did you jump the wall? Should we make it taller?
Are you sad now? Do you miss your mother?
Turn around, go back if you don’t like it here.
Go back to the poverty and the corruption and all your fears.
Home is where the heart is, but your heart can’t take anymore
Darling, Mama wants you to know that there will always be sunshine. She wants you to know that happiness is coming, that love and friendship is forever, and that her life can’t hurt you.
Darling, please don’t let her life hurt you.
Don’t let the people that you thought you knew know you better than you know yourself on only one side of your pendulum.
Don’t let yourself be stuck by their magnetic clockwork winding you up to the point that your green light eyes come on pleading “Unwind me!”
Darling, don’t let them continue to twist your gears until they snap.
Don’t let someone take you when you’re vulnerable with the breath half knocked out of you. Don’t let them pluck at your heart like a harp because
Darling, eventually they will start twisting those strings onto the braces on the teeth that weren’t good enough in the first place.
Darling, don’t let my depression corral you into a dark hole where you can only hear your mama’s voice.
Her breathing shaky and tight from being hit so many times by flung words of acid that silented her.
And darling, I’m sorry if when you lean against your mama’s chest you hear her broken heartbeat.
I’m sorry if you hear the rumbling of fear vibrating under her rib cage, the hate popping like rock candy, and the muffled cries for help from the days of her eating disorder.
I’m sorry if you only hear one side of your mama’s broken pendulum.
Congrats on your win in debate, sorry you had to see me after that encounter there. I know i shouldn’t have been in the mens bathroom, but what can i say i never back down from a dare. My friends dared me to give you a candy cane after they saw you walk into the bathroom. So i sucked it up and went on in. At the time you were still peeing so i had to awkwardly stand there until you were done. I’m glad you already had your thing put away when you turned around. I don’t know why i said it but sorry i said merry Christmas when it was like February. Now that i am thinking about it i hope you do celebrate Christmas. I hope the candy cane i gave you is what encouraged you to win because i think it gave you luck. Sorry it happened so soon after you went pee, i probably should have let you zip up your pants but i also could have given it to you when you were peeing so i think i was being generous.
Why did you crush the candy cane? On your way back to your round you threw the candy cane all crushed up at me and my friends. What was the point you could of had a sweet treat that made your breath smell minty, but no you just had to crush it like my dreams. I also sincerely hope you washed your hands after i left the bathroom.
“If i could choose to be gay or straight, I think I would have simply chosen to be happy.”
I want you to take a look inside of my mind i can’t promise you you’ll be fine. I myself am afraid to look inside my mind, It’s no good please stay far behind. Do you see it Kids acting one way but afraid to act the other. Do you see it….Do you see that me in the corner that I’m afraid…what I’m afraid of is that you’ll leave me the second you get, I’m afraid of failing again, of putting they’re all into one thing and getting all the bad consequences. Look deeper than that I don’t get close to anyone because i’m afraid of someone leaving again. I’m still holding onto that 5% chance of hope that it will get better. I’m 16 and already have Hydrocephalus, anxiety and depression. Apart of a community that people seem to not like because it’s different. I’m going to come out thru this piece this is why I need you to listen. Hello my name is alecia and I identify as pansexual and queer, I prefer the term human as wella s being called by my name no pronouns are needed. I have 2 gay cousins and in my opinion they’re not accepted as much as I hope they’d be.This society scares me because me coming out makes me a sinner right? But what about you? I’m not a religious person but correct me if I’m wrong but doesn’t the bible say “14 For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.
15 But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.”
Yes I looked it up. Macklemore said it best, “Still fears what we don’t know And God loves all his children it’s somehow forgotten
But we paraphrase a book written 3, 500 hundred years ago” the problem that we’re having not is “kids who are cutting their wrist because of who they choose kiss.” and do you think that’s okay how about this I’ll tell you exactly what my sin is because I think you deserve to know so you can forgive me, just like I forgave you of yours. I am Pansexual with means I’ll date anyone regardless of their gender, and no I am not bisexual rather you like it or not. there are 3 sexes you have male, female, and intersex. People and yes a lot people are going to say they’re only 2 sexes, Intersex people don’t get to choose what they are so there’s three. They are more than 3 genders and that’s where the word pansexual come from also know as omnisexual. Omni and pan mean all in greek. I could love all no matter your gender or sex. Bi means 2 not three not 4 nor 5 but 2. I have a heart that could love all, If i can even figure out how to stop worrying about being abandoned. Can I say something about the whole issue of people not wanting their kids to be around gay people because they’ll turn gay, to that I say “don’t let your kids near gay people or they’ll turn gay” Guess I shouldn’t bring them to Starbucks either, they might turn into a latte” I no longer believe in homophobia you’re just an asshole, so leave everyone alone and let them be happy you only have one life to live make it worth a while.
The smell of bonfires lingering in the sticky air,
The chattering of rumbling car engines,
And the smell of barbeque sauce, burnt marshmallows, and chlorine.
The sweet nectar of the rain,
Cake for breakfast on birthdays,
And wondering if you’ll make it to school on time.
The Christmas day excitment when you wake up extra-early just to open the gifts that have been teasing you from under the tree.
Lemonade stands that last all day,
And vanilla ice cream that you have to eat quickly to make sure that it doesn’t melt and slip onto the concrete.
Music in the car after school,
Surprise hair cuts,
And creating chalk cities.
Dogs chasing after tennis balls as they bound down the road.
Sitting on the back porch in the evening summer heat washing fresh vegetables from the garden,
Fresh donuts from the local bakery,
And accidentally playing cricket at dusk in the cactuses.
it’s not quite my home,
this i know,
the home of my favorite memories
so i can wish.
just walking here
fills me with content
watching the city rush around me
an excited calm.
so this is KC:
fairy lights lining ledges,
a parking spot nowhere to be found,
orange hued evening skies.
i almost live here
but not quite,
suburbs near the edge of the city
just average blue springs.
but the city steals breath,
buildings stacked buildings,
a scene of a hundred different strangers
amidst the unmoving city.
some bits don’t change.
quik trip at every turn,
the erratic, ever-changing skies,
between my home and KC.
the city always felt cold.
smiling through shivers,
the bite of winter chill stung my face
snaking underneath my coat.
hand in hand,
exploring curious vendors,
wandering city with a dear friend
in awe of the the busy streets.
it’s not quite my home
home of the lighthearted moments
where walking is a small adventure,
home of my heart.
I’ve lived here my whole life
I may have moved
but I never went far
This is my home no matter what
My home is where
You see the cornfields
but still can see the city
Its where my family is never far
and my friends are even closer
My friends who help me through
Lifes roughest points
Whose families will take me in
Without a second thought
Even when it was unconventional
My friends who support me
With everything I do
The people who make everyday
That much brighter
And help me get to where I need to be
My home is where the Royals won the world series
For the first time in so long
Seeing the city come together
To celebrate this small yet big victory
It’s where the best barbecue
is right around the corner
where the family meets for fathers day
and we all get the same order everytime
where they remember your name
No matter how long it has been
There are quicktrips are wherever you go
with the blue raspberry slushes
In the back of the store
and the isle of candy to the left of the door
Where whenever I enter I feel safe
My heart belongs to KCMO
and home is where the heart is
The four amigos set out on a quest. We had been planning this for about a week, to set out on an adventure to experience something other than out repetitive everyday lives. I made sure to pick up a few cans of the paint that sprays every time that I went to the home depot for house renovation stuff. It was me: the guy with his dads company card who bought enough things at the Home Depot to sneak in a can or two and pass by as 18. The caves are a place by my friend jts house. It’s an old mine and it goes back pretty far. There’s two entrances to the cave and the first one is surrounded by a few trees and you have to climb up what the locals call pride rock ( it’s just a big concrete platform) the first entrance leads to a pretty basic little system with a wet ceiling and a set temperature of 60 degrees. The second entrance leads to the same environment but there’s a ladder and on the ladder there was a phone number. We reluctantly called the phone number and a young guy answered and started telling us that if we go all of the way back that we’ll find chairs and a piano and a bunch of other creepy things. He then hung up and went back to work. The four amigos including myself let out a collective sigh and we ventured in like we were playing Minecraft. We were instructed to hug the right side of the walls on the way back and all the way back. It was good advice and the deeper we got in the scarier it was. We saw a few paintings here and there but obviously there weren’t enough because we decided to add several of our own with spray cans I had purchased at the local Home Depot. We were about half a mile in and no one wanted to give up, but we were getting spooked. I threw a rock to the side when no one was watching me and two of the guys literally jumped as I erupted into laughter. 15 minutes into our expedition someone finally noticed something. There were several chairs set up all facing what had been a fire. There were also a few carnival games and a piano that didn’t actually work. There were beer bottles scattered all over the ground and a see saw that I took a rather aesthetically pleasing picture next to. There were also however these little dollar tree battery powered candles that were still illuminated. None of us knew the actually battery life of those candles and we all came to the conclusion that someone had been there recently. We all started jogging back making sure to hug the left side of the caves. My friend Miguel ran over a tripwire which he swore was going to trigger some Indiana Jones type of booby trap and lead to his demise. Half of me wanted it to, because it would have made this story more interesting and because that would be one less guy in my truck, but the other half of me knew that Miguel and work well as midfielders. We approached the first bit of natural light and it came off as green for some reason and the scholar in me was reminded of a book I had half read called the great gatsby. I made for the green light swiftly and subtly. We all then exited the cave and started making our way towards the exit and down pride rock. We saw some car drive by and one of the guys was feeling extra rebellious and flipped the car off. We then all watched the car go to the end of coal mine and then turn back around, we all rushed to the truckmobile and sped off making sure the jeep wrangler never saw us again.