A love letter to those to whom femininity is forbidden or frowned upon. Effeminate boys & men. Femme trans* women and two spirit people. Femme genderqueers. Beloved ho’s. And all other femmes who are called “too much” or not meant to exist.
My dearest forbidden flowers,
Let me stand before you, that you may harvest your bloom. Fishnet stem reaching to tight studded shorts, matching phone case peaking from front pocket. Petals, my blouse hugging boy tits. My stamen, grandmother’s plastic pearls repurposed into safety pin qu-earring.
This blossom now, but before, I was the spindly weed, confused not by who I was but by how this gender disordered world sought to manicure me: first into a pretty girl, and then later a “manly” man. Lest they betray me, I kept my pink petals tucked under rigid thorny leaves. Until one day that tomboy I was clambered to the top of the hedge, straining to peer over, and I saw…You!
You! Exquisite haven of forbidden flowers in every imaginable bloom.
You! The stubborn glitter that lingers weeks after the party.
You who beckon to me in sweeping cement cityscapes with your flashes of fuchsia, glints of gold, and streaks of silver. You, prancing studded boots pressing possibility into pavement. And every micro-bounce to your step is a victory in this plagued world that seeks to smash your petals, frost your emotions, wilt your intuition, rake your ruffles and masticate your splendor into row upon row of neatly clipped hedges.
But together, you and I, we will hold the million memories of sweet children separated from boyhood dresses and silenced squeals and cascading tears and long locks of hair and mums’ lipsticks, abandoned under threat.
Have you ever wondered where the snatched sequins drift?
Where do the seized satin socks lie their worn out feet?
Perhaps there a river of confiscated emotions gushing down into a graveyard of broken lilac dreams. Deep graves crammed with giddy emotions and graceful gloves and girly giggles. Grey gravestones spiked into the treasures beneath.
This, my pledge to you:
For every crushed frilly boyhood, a thousand manly ruffles will take your place.
For every girl kidnapped into boyhood, a thousand constricting chains will be cracked.
For every femme called “too much”, a thousand more will be a thousand much-more-too-much.
For every fallen pansy, a thousand petunias will bloom on your grave.
And your ashes will be mixed with magenta and painted on the lids of a thousand thousand warriors. War paint. Fierce defiance. Faithful memory. We will not only not forget: we will make the pavements on which you fell our runways, and we will mince! We will strut so fiercely, prides of peacocks will follow our flaming trails. We will saunter until the streets are streaked with silver glitter. We will careen wildly in the highest of heels without caution for what is “practical”, because we know that every ground-breaking invention, every unimaginable innovation, every revolutionary creation was born from ingenious impracticality.
And to the hedge makers who would wrestle away our sparkly delights, with stifled snickers or crushing blows, let us tell them this: Beware. You are right to fear us. We are dangerous. We are revolutionaries. We are healers. We are mums, dads, brothers, sisters, siblings, cousins, lovers, fighters, artists, visionaries. Some of our lace may be tucked only beneath our pants. Some of our tears fall only behind dry eyes. Some of our pink is worn only in the soles of our feet. But make no mistake. We are EVERYWHERE! And our parties are fun-er. Our battle screeches louder. Our dreams brighter.
And our revolution will be the most
you have ever seen!
It will be waged alongside warrior women and brazen girls and genderqueer grandparents and sex workers and ancestors and queens and studs and femme scientists and tomboys and crips and butches and sharks and faggots and magic makers and peacocks and inventors of mother-fucking-delight! Our trenches will be lined with fake fuchsia fur. Our guns will shoot silver glitter. And we will conjure storms of diamante studs that will scour the fear from the hearts of the hedge makers until there is nothing left except the naked love that held us all in the seeds of our births…
And when the storm settles,
until the sun streaks the sky in persimmon orange and crimson pink.
and so shall our heels till the soil
and so shall our glitter seed the earth
and you’d better be ready for the fucking exquisite garden which stretch all the way to the stars!
This is how it will be,
my forbidden flowers,
Dare To Bloom.
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