saying it out loud

by cjra

you can maybe say it on a park bench on a hot day with pink and gold chalk in your hands.

or, you can maybe say it indirectly, like “girl or guy” or “guy or–girl” or “i came to realize that…” and then there are times when you do not have to say it at all because who really needs to know and who really cares? but it is true, true that people aren’t lying when they say saying it out loud helps. 

so now, you can’t tell when you first realized you were bisexual. was it at nine yrs, kneeling in front of the tv screen, eyes widening at a woman wrapped in a soft white sheet / getting carpet printed into your skin? at ten yrs when you held your friend’s small body close in your family’s dark guestroom, wishing, wondering why there were so many layers between those new selves? or maybe, in some strange way at sixteen when you dismissed all the previous for a life of pure-virgin-straightness. at any time, there was no label in your head to apply. just–you’re only straight. everyone else could have those other names, but not you, because you were good. god saves! while there were still makeup magazines on the dresser for more than one thought-purpose.

and it was not until one yr after college, after thinking and thinking, that the slow dawning-on came again. the thought that maybe you can lie to most of your friends and family, but not to yourself. the fact that you had never fucked anyone didn’t mean a thing. how does a secret like that feel. maybe like a little pit or balled fist in your stomach. judging from your father’s all-in-good-fun remarks and your grandmother’s blatant i think it’s wrong, you know this discussion would probably not go over well–before, during, or after dinner. any christian friends who would walk away the moment they knew.

but you can still say it out loud! even alone. even to the mirror, during the times you feel like a horrible liar. when you read about men / women / anyone writing you off as a myth, that you are just pretending to be an addendum so others will offer their pity attention. when you worry about your best friends ever giving you sideways glances. but no. 

you are real. and it’s okay.