New Trans Voices: Hear From the Trans Poets Workshop NYC

Members of the Trans Poets Workshop NYC offer pieces from their diverse bodies of work.



Alyssa Harley


The first time you hit me,
you got out of your car and yelled,
“Are you smoking reefer in front of my son?”
and you pointed out your son to me, whom I had already seen.
I pulled the rolling American Spirit out of my bag and said,
“See, you hit me for no reason.”

The second time you hit me,
you said it was because I was a “faggot ass motherfucker,”
but since it was Christmas Eve and you were with your wife and baby,
I tried to wish you “happy holidays” and “Merry Christmas.”
I certainly could hear you yelling at me,
even as you kept on shouting out you weren’t.

The third time you hit me
was after I invited you to bend right over for me,
maybe you feared the scratch of my lavender nails
or maybe you knew that I was really shitting you,
that I would have never wanted your mean ass prison flesh,
even if your suggestions weren’t already not my style.

Fuck Christmas.
Fuck all of these holidays of self-righteous men.
Fuck these self-righteous men
beating their blind stupid paths across this earth.

Alyssa Harley is a poet and playwright and the author of the spoken-word opera Number Ten Dream.