Exclusively on Venus
Roses are red / violets are transsexual / welcome to womanhood / now get to work honey
Roses are performative / violets are biological / I have very sensitive breasts / and so do your breasts
Roses are biological / you have the nicest skin / I can't stop kissing you / let's read more nondualistic queer theory
Roses are fed up / with our binary fetishes / I tricked my doctors / and stole all the medication to hide it in a cave and share it with other trans people
Roses have got me / up against the wall / kissing my neck / which is socially constructed to be a super hot strong feminist neck
Roses are violet / violets are roses / I really like you / I like you tube
Roses are born this way / violets have a lesbian streak / something about your dry sense of humor and our soft intertwined limbs / feels transcendently female
Roses are blue / violets are violet / roses are nonviolet / blue is bluenormative
Roses are from mars / violets had the whole surgery / setting up camp / exclusively on Venus
Roses have gone too far / not to be what girls are made of / I'm coming out / to my academic colleagues as a poet and I bet they will run away screaming
Roses are roses / violets are born this way / someone's got a hoard / of heteronormative transaffirmation porn you say?
Roses are cheeky / I want you to fuck me / drown violets like an accused witch / in your arms which feel like mine
Violets got a name change / roses changed a pronoun / we ate at a restaurant / and forgot to put the leftovers in the fridge
Roses are trochaic / violets have their original plumbing / let's march in a protest / then go home and we'll cook something delicious and eat it with a spork
Violets are permanent / roses are impermanent / thank you for becoming me / offering to embrace your form your fate
Flowerbeds are umbrellas / umbrellas are rubrics / I support your identification / and your disidentification
Men are from women / roses are from Jupiter / women are from men / I can't tell which is softer, your lips or this pillow or the snow descending gracefully outside
Originally appeared in The Brooklyn Rail. Copyright © 2016 Trace Peterson. Used with permission of the author.
Trace Peterson is a trans woman poet critic. Author of Since I Moved In (new & revised) (Chax Press, 2019), she is also founding editor and publisher of EOAGH, which has won two Lambda Literary Awards, including the first given in transgender poetry. She is coeditor of the anthology Troubling the Line: Trans and Genderqueer Poetry and Poetics (Nightboat Books, 2013) and Arrive on Wave: Collected Poems of Gil Ott (Chax Press, 2016). Peterson has taught at Yale University and the Poetry Project, and currently teaches in the Naropa Summer Writing Program and at Hunter College.
Date Published: 2016-03-07
Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/exclusively-venus