Boys like me do not shine.
We burn!
No! No! No!
Not burn in the ways of celestial stars.
We burn on stakes
With hate as fuel
And rage as the fires.
We burn in tires
Cooked flesh and gaping wounds
Gasoline smells and writhing beings
We douse these fires with tears
With cries and hope and deep terrible darkness
We are reborn in these fires
Because boys like me do not die
Not when there is still love yet to give

Boys like me do not shine, we burn.
Yes! Yes! Yes!
Like stars in the far universe
We burn in rages of ethereal fire
With voice like gentle streams
And bodies like men goddesses
And legs for days
And tears for nights
Boys like me wear pink and lace
And smother our faces in feminine otherness
Beautiful otherness
And clothe our bodies in silk dyed red from blood
And crowns that pierce our skulls
Until redness drowns us in warmth

Boys like me do not live
Only alive things can live
And we are not alive
No! No! No!
Not dead
Just unalive
Merely existing
Under cloaks of forced smiles
And forced steps
And restrained hands that want to run free
Under jeans that balk
And shirts that swallow
And caps that cover
Until we are fully otherness
Untrue otherness

Boys like me are neither dead nor alive
Nor dead in aliveness
Nor alive in deadness
Boys like me are fountains of untold dreams
And rivers of unsung wishes
And mountains of hardened flesh
That break under the press of a lover’s lips
Boys like me are here and not here
And there and not there
Until we are and are not
Until we become otherness
Until we are frayed at our edges
And our layers peel through
Raw and painful and beautiful and true
Boys like me are gods
Deities of flesh and liquid redness and steel and dulled fire
Boys like me do not die
Not when there is still love left to give
Boys like me do not die
Unalive things can not die.





Photo by Ekaterina Bolovtsova from Pexels