queerness in the age of zoom

(AKA the mortifying ordeal of being known, part two electric boogaloo)


when all i am to you is pixels,

how do i offer up the meaning of a glance,

the subtext of a comment,

the message of a pin on my favorite bag?


how do i illustrate from the little box on your screen in which i exist

that i am more,

that i am rough-edged,

that i am queer,

that i am different and strange

but also just like you at the exact same time?


how do i make myself known

when my eyebrow slit has grown out

and my undercut does not show

and there is no room on the shared wall behind me for a flag in the colors i hold memorized behind my eyelids?


even i can’t understand why i am so desperate for you to know that

yes, i do listen to girl in red, i do,

and that yes, the shirt emblazoned with rainbow hues

that i drape myself in

oh so often

is not the shirt of an ally,

the six stripes across the chest are in the shades that belong to me,

the ones i hope belong to you too


in the blue light of my computer screen there is no place for nuance,

no place for suggestion,

no place for me

sometimes the only want i have is to see and be seen,

but set amongst turned off cameras

and checked out students, i will never know if anyone

has even cared enough to look


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