Definitely a sequence


Children learn subtext even as they read
those first few sentences of family.
They’re angry, there is something wrong with me.
Shoelace I can’t quite tie; door-knobs that need

grasping in some way I don’t know. I talk
too soft, too loud, too musical. My chair
rocks when I giggle. Hold my teddy bear
as if it were a doll. Learn to stick a cork

in everything I like. And when they burn
a book for telling lies that were half-true,
I watch the flames too hard. The things that grew
in me were all a subtext in their turn

I learned to hide, lie better. Found in shame
home more myself than face or given name.


About rozkaveney

Middleaged, trans, novelist, poet, activist
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3 Responses to Definitely a sequence

  1. cmcmck says:

    This sequence is coming very close to home indeed!

  2. natalief says:

    This reminds me a lot of my childhood.

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