There are No Homosexual Members of the Church

You’re usually not that blunt.

It’s usually sewn in with threads of:

motherhood, divine goal, dating advice, dances,

I usually just


don’t exist.


All of it comes together in The Plan,

scraps of fabric hand-sewn together into a white




wedding dress.

Ready for the man I’m bound to meet.


But it doesn’t fit.


It’s bodice squeezes at my chest,

fabric billows at my stomach,

the neckline tightened like a noose.


and I don’t know my future without my



and I don’t know what I am without my




But I am going to burn your



Streak around a bonfire filled with white lace and satin.

I won’t hang myself by your expectations—

because there are No Homosexual Members of the Church.


And though you'd rather

sew my lips closed, my mouth smiling, and my tear ducts shut

then let me embroider Queer on a pillowcase.


I take a seam ripper to your stitches

cross stitched scriptures ripped out

stitch by stitch,

and replace them with my own.


Until my hands tremble from tying knots

and my back aches from bowing

and my fingers bleed from pin point needles.


Then I switch to my sewing machine;

which roars with all the things

you told me not to say,

to think.


Creating sloppy cursive in old church t-shirts,

with their too high necklines,

sewing over the bullshit platitudes

you adorne me with.


Needle stabbing up and down into cotton

my foot slammed on the pedal

while you call me bitter and lost

in polite condescension.


I lift my bare foot to silence.


I look around the room.


Scissors and needles and unraveling thread,

unraveling every part of me you made.


And a capital QUEER sewn into everything I own

loud and impossible to ignore.

To loud for you to muffle with Christ-like cotton.


And there are No Homosexual Members of the Church,

because we left for the world or left for our graves.


And I leave your world of fabric-filled silence.


This poem is about: 
My community
Poetry Terms Demonstrated: 


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