A Poem for My Brother
“Vanessa, you look fantastic. Can you keep the dress on?
It won’t be that long
Come on it’s church, it’s only an hour. You can take it off right after.
Before you know it, it’ll be done.
See, it wasn’t even that bad. it was kind of fun.
You couldn’t possibly say?!
You’re hair is so nice and long…
If you don’t want it, send it my way!“
My sister left in November of 2013.
She ran away from home and those days apart were the longest of my life.
The day she returned, her long locks were gone.
My family and I tried to embrace her in our arms.
But she did not want to be touched.
Before we said or did anything
She pulled out a piece of paper,
From her pocket, this is what she read.
You might not know this, but this journey has been very hard for me.
Everyday for the last 17 years of my life, I have woken up and felt as though God himself has displaced me,
That God hates me,
Why would He put me into the wrong body?
For years, I have remained silent and when I ran away I was not sure if I would ever come back.
The truth is that I would rather die than spend another day at home living a lie.
Home is supposed to be a place, a space where I can be myself, dress myself, express myself,
And I understand if can no longer do those things here anymore.
I understand if I no longer have a home with you.
I still wanted to tell you the truth.
I wanted you to know
You have not done anything wrong.
You could not have done anything differently.
This is who I am. I am not Vanessa, and I will now go by Sam.
Sam is my brother and as long as I am living I will stand by him in solidarity.
His Bruno-Mars looking self.
Respect is not radical, it is a right that he deserves, as much as you or I.
He does not identify with lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender, or queer,
He identifies as human.
And if God existed and was gendered, I know she’d smile upon my beautiful brother, why else would She send down rainbows?
The indoctrination of a nation
Of homophobic feels they sold to you
Is under the production of a president that does not see my brother, nor the truth.
He does not feel his pain or affliction
Know his adversity or transition,
Understand the violence, nor the discrimination.
The orange man does not fuel equal rights,
Give me salvation, help him see the light.
Not all teachers can see their students,
Not all parents can accept their children,
Not all persons can love their neighbor,
Because you cannot legislate love
Because you cannot legislate fairness
Because my brother has to fight for the rest of his life.
Without empathy and acceptance, our world is regressing.
I often wonder if we keep oppressing
What makes up 10% of a population, will it still be non-threatening?
I don’t know. In truth, it’s beyond my control.
What I do know is that my brother was my sister, and this person, my blood, my love has the same beautiful soul…
By Veronica Mejia