By: Anonymous

What will you let yourself know?
And what will you put in boxes
And crush
Hoping it won’t spring up again

My attic is full of chests that I’ve battered in
Locked and guarded
That I’ve known I couldn’t see
Without ever looking inside

Even in learning, I was actively ignorant
I reread the same pages
“Sex changes”
And bodies that grew like mine but went by different names

But I still went by “mine” for 17 years
It never stung,
But the name’s been poisoning my dinner, night after night
Since I was a child

My first period was like an Ari Aster film
I cried for the entire day
And said I wanted to rip out the space between my legs
But girls must be girls

I am going to open the chest that I pulverized
Pull out all the words I breathlessly stuffed inside, in hopes that
Like a necromantic incantation
They might wake up the long-dead part of me