The invisible woman


‘You said it was for the best if my soul remained hidden. . . . I believed you for a time.’


This poem appears as part of “ We’re Right Here: Transgender and Nonbinary Unitarian Universalist Leaders” in the Summer 2019 edition, developed in collaboration with TRUUsT and edited by the Rev. Theresa I. Soto.

Behind a façade I hid my soul.
I feared what others would say(and I feared what I knew to be true).

But I heard you singing in four-part harmonythat everyone,everyone,is beautiful.
And I hoped that everyone included me.

I wanted to join your song.
I wanted to raise my voice with yours.
And that’s when I discovered that everyonedoesn’t meanall.

You told me tobe silent,
You told me togo back to the shadows.
You told me to disappear,again.
You said it was for the best if my soul remainedhidden.

Did I have some hideous, Medusan power
To harden the order of creation intougliness?
That is what I heard you say.

I believed you.

I believed youfor a time.

But my soul’s tears
And its longing to live its own truth
Grew more powerful than any admonitions,than any fears.

And I began to sing.

A small voice at first, shaky and tentative.
It was a small voice that could not, would notstop.

As my own music slowlycrescendoed with confidence,
My hymn soon rang out:

“Enough! Enough!
I will step into the sunlight.
I will sing myself!
The song of my soul
will be heard.”

Though I could never raise my voicein your chorus,
You can join my choir of gloriousharmonies.
And as I have been freed,so might you findfreedom also.
Not an easy freedom,
But it is born of pain and experience,of innocence and hope.
It is a divine oratorio.

Yet our tune can only begin
If you believe that I
Am just as beautiful as anyone.
And that we are just as beautifulas each other.