A Safety Survey for Pride Month

I remember lying on my bed late at night
The images of that.. survey
tattooed behind my eyelids

I remember having to check off the boxes that apply
But how can you apply a label to the deep down feeling of being bullied
How can you label the sleepless nights and tempest-tossed days,
Of lying in bed wondering when the world will change

When you want to make a difference
But it’s hard
Because people won’t listen

When innocence is dressed as protection
The lines get fuzzy
Because I can remember times when my age cost me my innocence
And my innocence cost me my age

“The resources that we provide
The time that has been generously set aside
You need to pick a side”
But there are too many unanswered questions about this list of what feels like right and wrong answers

But it’s okay, because there’s an “all of the above” option

The messages students are sending out are being ignored
We talk to the janitor, instead of the head of the school board
When the teacher who said they’d to help you decides to retire
We are tired

This form is supposed to help us
But it has formed into an endless hole of anger and confusion
We are tired of being told that we are safe when our safety seems to be disguised as a Google questionnaire.

So I lay on my bed for a little while longer
And thought of this poem
To all the girls and the boys
And everyone in between
Who’s ever struggled with self-worth
And even self-esteem
We are in this together
We can work to be better
So we won’t have to lay in bed,
wondering when the questions won’t make us question our inherent value

Because we are worth something
Something more than what we know
More than hair, makeup, piercings and clothes
This is some progress, a movement, a fight that can grow
And hopefully one day… our identities can show
And all of this can start by hanging up a rainbow :)

My name is May, I’m a mental health advocate, and I write slam poetry! I’m a bisexual woman of color. I’ve seen a lot of stuff I think the world needs to hear.