Some Gender Haikus
For You to Enjoy or Not
I Don’t Care:
I am seen at times
As a young, small boy of sorts
I don’t care at all.
People are bothered
By things that don’t affect them
Because they’re stupid.
When humans are trans
Or otherwise gender queer
Leave them alone, jeez.
When I was five, I knew the truth. I knew who I was. I even knew the language to use to put forth to others who I was. Who I am. But I was told I was wrong. I was told IT was wrong. And because I was young, I surely believed it.
When I was eight, I tried on my skin. My true self. And I was still very young, but I knew it fit me perfectly and me alone. And so I kept it to myself. I wore it under my more loose-fitting outer shell. I kept it safe and warm and I was sure to comfort it when it felt scared or vulnerable.
I was 13 and I hated that skin. It was getting older and grew itchy. It started to rot and it started to smell. Still, I begrudgingly carried it around and I told myself it would wilt and die when it was ready. Told myself I wouldn’t have to carry it around forever. But there it stayed, clawing at it’s itches, scratching its way out until it killed all my nerves and I felt nothing at all.
I was 17 when I sat in its presence. Young but okay. It had made its way out and I stared it in the face for the first time. It was sweeter and gentler than I had expected, when with it’s claws and scratches. I knew again what it was and that it was mine. It was a part of me all along but it couldn’t survive under that shell. It couldn’t hide forever. And so there it was, say on a park jungle gym in the cool wind of autumn. It was so easy to let it run free. Maybe a little too free, but that betrayal was something I would learn to live with and embrace. When something is locked up for so long, it is bound to come forth with an explosive energy. It’s okay not to contain it.
When I was 23, I hurt it. I abused it. It did not deserve to be treated that way. It had been trapped for so long and it deserved to be taken care of and cared about. And here I was, throwing it around to whoever would take it. Other young skins clawing it from the outside, now. It was falling into whatever traps they set and letting it scream and cry. Nothing to claw at this time. Once it escaped, it was out. But it was in pain, now, and I let it. I ignored it like a crying child throwing a tantrum.
When I was 24, I gave it peace. Not the peace it ever thought it would find, but the peace it needed. It settled into the crook of that joy and it lay there completely still. It found a home. Something that needed repairs here and there, but something comforting and good. It was ever yet still young, but in time, it would know the difference between being young and being unsure. This time, it was sure.
Without the awareness of a thing, does it really exist? No. Not to you. And the only things real in your life are the things you know. Everything that is real exists in your own brain. If it doesn’t exist there, it does not exist to you. It only exists elsewhere, whether known or unknown to others.
If you doubt this, remember: The average human eye can see only 1 million colors. I say “only” 1 million because tetrachromats- humans who possess four cone cells in their eyes rather than the average three cone cells- can see up to 100 million colors. Had you not read this, you would assume you were able to see maybe not all of the colors, but all of the colors the eye could see.
Never forget that everything you learn can change your entire reality. Take in every bit of knowledge you can. Make your universe everything you want it to be.
Growing up, we had many, many pets. However, most of them were for extremely brief periods of time. Most of them were also cats. But when my parents felt there needed to be a sacrifice made for them (IE: finding a place to live which was cat-friendly), they had to go. I don’t know how much impact this had on my brothers. The Boys didn’t seem to grasp it or feel it the way I did. The devastation was real. I know because I still feel it. Not in the way you feel a distant memory. I feel it as if it is fresh. That pit in your stomach when you feel too sick to eat or sleep, that will catch me if I’m not careful.
My first love was Aladdin. He was part of a set: Jasmine and Aladdin. I do not know or sure who named Jasmine and Aladdin but I bet it was my mother and not one of us kids, despite the childish names. I imagine this scenario being a dream for her:
“Oh, so which one of the kids loves ‘Aladdin’?”
My mom, “What do you mean?”
“Well, Jasmine and Aladdin- I can only assume…”
“OH! HAHAHAHHAHAHSH *raucous laugher* No no no- Iiiii named them!”
“Well! Isn’t that cute??”
My mother- she would do literally anything for the smallest bit of attention. Even if it was the kind which made people question her maturity and sanity. ANYWAY—
Jasmine and Aladdin came from my dad’s ex-wife. They kept in touch, as they lived in the same city and shared three kids (all of which lived with her.)
I don’t remember much about Jasmine. I think she might have been Aladdin’s mom or sister. Aladdin, on the other hand, was my baby. I picked him out of his litter. They were mostly calico but somehow Aladdin ended up being white with a gray patch over his right eye and another on his back. My dad tried to talk me into a prettier kitten but I was set on Aladdin. He was fluffy and scruffy and he took to me quickly. I think he knew I, too, was strange and unusual. The first time I met him, he slept on my lap and played a game with my hand where I would tease him for one second and he would immediately scratch me until I bled. What wasn’t to love?
I must have been around age six when we got Jasmine and Aladdin because Grammy had passed and my parents were down to get cats again. We had them for less than a year, as a situation with the house caused us to have to leave.
In the short time we had Aladdin, I got into the habit of getting up around 4 a.m. and playing with him downstairs. This would go on for a little while before we would fall asleep on the couch together, spoons-style. I was the big spoon. By the time we were getting rid of Aladdin, I was nearing seven years old and Aladdin—when stood on all fours—was eye-level with me. Now, I was small for my age (around the height of the average five-and-a-half year old), but that was a huge cat. And he wasn’t even full-grown. This was full-body purr-filled spoons.
I remember the day he left really well. I played with him one last time and cuddled him on the couch and cried and told him I loved him for so long I grew hoarse. He licked my face and kneaded my shoulders. When my dad took him away from me, I cried and screamed and cried and screamed. But he insisted he had to to give him to the person from the pound and I should relax. I watched the truck leave. It was the first time I had my heart broken and it was the last time I was ever a morning person.