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Campus Access

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Degree Type

Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.)

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A collection of poems engaging themes of: the concept of choice in queerness; heteronormative familial socialization; the metaphorical and literal loss of motherhood from a transmasculine subjectivity; how people socialized into cis-normative feminity learn methods of self-protection that are dependent upon womens’ collectivity; and how media representations shape a child’s perspective of identity-building options.

In queerness, our lack of choice operates as a source of empowerment—or, rather, a shield against doubts. To insist on having no choice is to ask the hegemon for a form of parental protection. Innocent. I was born this way. You birthed me this way. The least you can do is love the monster you made. These poems reject this parental protection.

Born this way. Transexuals are expected to perform a linear narrative in order to substantiate their claim. I knew I was a boy from a young age. I want to have heterosexual sex with women. Now, I am a man. However, this demand for a linear narrative has scarcely gone uncontested. Lou Sullivan, cited in the epigraph, famously rebelled against his rejection from the Stanford Gender Dysphoria Program, a rejection rooted in the belief that transsexuals cannot also be homosexuals. “I love being a girl,” he writes in his childhood diaries. “So delicate.” These poems ask: If a transmasculine person can be a homosexual, then can a transmasculine person love being a girl?

Available for download on Thursday, May 14, 2026