thinking of you

the dog spreads her body
across the couch’s head–
slung about awkwardly.

this is her position
of comfort.

and as I listen to her breathe,
I think of you and wonder
if you still fear loving
someone who isn’t afraid
of loving you.

just let me breathe

I have talked about triggers–how
I’m trying to wade through them,
forgiving you for leaving–loving
you even more for not staying …

you knew how much you
could take, how no form
of fake air could save you.

I try to push through my
nights–try to get myself
ahead without a single tear.
I am unsuccessful in
my endeavors.

that doesn’t mean I
won’t keep trying.
I aim to breathe again
without the stifling pain
of remembrance.

I want to.
and so shall it be.

Carrying a “Male” Name

Musical Selection: Kanye West (& other Lyricists)|Monster

An audio-poetic rant

Comic Strips Tre. Photo by my cousin Alex; tweaked and enhanced by Tremaine L. Loadholt
Carrying a “Male” Name by Tremaine L. Loadholt

People have been “misgendering” me
before calling it out was a thing.

I carry a “male” name; one that typically
appears before I do.

I cannot tell you how many times
I have said, “But I am a woman,” or
“It’s actually Tree•Maine.”
If I had a dollar … You know the rest.

I’ve lived a life of correcting people
about who I am and how I exist
before I was old enough to vote.
Before I was old enough to
sort out who respected me vs. who
just wanted to enunciate two syllables
the way they wanted to.

There is no patience in
learning one’s name or the
person tasked with enduring it
until the grave embraces them;
not in this country.

Here is something I’ll share
for free; if a person asks you
to pronounce their name correctly,
do it.

If a person asks you to use
their nickname, do it. (Chances are,
they’re tired of correcting you.)

If you have assumed the person
is whatever gender you’ve envisioned
for them before meeting them
because you thought their name
will lend you someone else, 
“That is a YOU problem.”

Fix it.

**An earlier version of this piece appeared via ACG’s Instagram “stories.” Published in A Cornered Gurl via Medium.

Explicit lyrics|content warning, “Monster.”

**I am NOT a Kanye West fan; Nicki Minaj & Jay Z’s verses are my favorites.