Coming Out

Coming out is crossing—
not knowing how—
the line, the road, the tracks,
the river, the channel, the canyon.
Crossing that chasm by sheer grace.
A pilgrimage I learn I am on
only when labor is done
and I gain my name.
Crossing the culture
causes me wounds
but the view from the other side,
oh, an expanse of compassion!

envelops the suffering of others.
I am a woman wearing a burqa,
the shroud
that allows only
a patch of mesh to see and breathe.
I am a woman who rips it off.
I will never take for granted
peripheral vision
or sunlight’s revelation.
Coming out, I become
fully human.

©Susa Silvermarie 2024

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