A Bisexual Woman’s Lament: I Don’t Need Valentine’s Day

An audio lamentation

Photo by Marwan Ahmed on Unsplash
A Bisexual Woman’s Lament ©2023 Tremaine L. Loadholt

Another day of love for lovers is here,
and I am unbothered by the frenzy and
unfulfilled purposed people struggling
to find the best gifts for others they
half love Monday through Thursday, and
find themselves wanting to be rid of by

I smile. I smirk. I know where it all ends, 
and sadly, where it will begin again, and
I say, “I don’t need Valentine’s Day to
express my love for another — to let them
know I truly care. If I love you, you know.
I tell you. I show you.”
And I get stares that seem to skitter
about from the eyes and roll off to
skim through my thoughts.

I said what I said.
And I meant it.

My mother is the only person who
can call me and say, “Happy Valentine’s Day,”
and I don’t flinch or cringe — she has done
it for decades now. Ain’t no stopping her.
The pressure that comes with this day
is abhorrent. 
I have seen people take their last 
$50.00 to semi-splurge on 
things their loved one didn’t need.

And here we are, living during a time
when four gallons of gas will probably
cause you to get evicted. 
Do what you want with your money, I know
what I will be doing with mine.

This day reappears yearly, and it’s the same
charade setting itself up on 
bended knees to knock every participant
down and out before they can utter
half-hearted “I love yous.”

Commercialism at its finest.

And you’ll succumb. You’ll buy the roses.
You’ll book the restaurant reservation.
You’ll get the diamonds and pearls and 
toe the line of bankruptcy to 
fulfill an empty heart that only really
needs you — that only really needs . . . love.

I’ll try not to put my foot too far in my mouth,
because I am loving a woman who will 
one day have me running out to find
the best thing suited for the whole of her — of who
she is — Valentine’s Day, included among all

If it’ll draw that dimpled smile from her 
face for eleven seconds, I’d succumb, too.
But for now, I don’t need Valentine’s Day.
It can’t have what I have and won’t give
me what I want — what I need.

I’ll sit back and watch and wonder 
how much longer we’ll dive into
the moneymaking day of love that still
manages to leave people depressed
when the day is done.

We are knee-deep in its throes . . .
bound to sink in its making faster
than we ever could in quicksand.

Originally published at Prism & Pen via Medium.

℗ 2000 Hidden Beach Records, Jill Scott, Slowly Surely

a poem for Victoria

on her birthday

Photo collage of Victoria (one of me sprinkled in, too). Created by Tremaine L. Loadholt. All photos taken by Victoria Georges
a poem for Victoria by Tremaine L. Loadholt

here you are; a warm welcome,
renewed spirit, confident and
secure — a peace I didn’t know
I needed.
my heart wells up with joy
at the thought of your growth — 
how amazing you are, and
the similarities sitting in
your heart — so much like your
mother but clearly your
own self.

I stand in awe of you.
I remember when you
were born, how happy
your parents were, and I
lived for the updated photos,
stories, and time spent with
my little cousin who had a
smile that could shame the sun.

so far away, always so far
away — yet near enough to
dwell in my mind — take up
space I had no problem lending.
you are a glorious, strong force
in a world of terror and pain.

you pick up everything
whenever you’re ready,
relocate to places with
half-hearted moons and
split-tongue warriors with
gray eyes.

we all live vicariously through
you — we may not say it but
we think it.
free spirit — unafraid to make
moves when moves need to
be made, and on this, your
day of birth, I want you to know
that I love you to
the full-bodied moon and
back again.

there will be pregnant pauses
for the rest of my day as I
share time with my thoughts
to appreciate your existence.
happy birthday, Victoria.
God gift you years upon
years upon years more.

©2023 Tremaine L. Loadholt

On Tuesday, February 07, 2023, my little cousin (Chrissy’s daughter) celebrated another year on this Earth, and I wrote this for her. Thank you for reading, and for listening, too. Originally published in A Cornered Gurl via Medium.


Photo by Gui França on Unsplash
taken by Tremaine L. Loadholt

I am taken aback by her — by
who she is, what she does, and
how she moves about in
this world.

she is bold — passionate about
life and her surroundings, and
I stand on faltering feet,
wondering when I’ll be
able to l o o s e this confession
curdling my spirit.

I am eating my words
for dinner, submerging my
heart into overflowing waters,
stunted by fears that
tangle my tongue.

women need to come with
instruction manuals, and an
extra five dollars behind
their ears — I got tolls to
pay every time I lose
myself in one of them.

I get shy around her–nerves
tighten my stomach muscles,
and I play hide-n-seek with
my words. 
why am I like this?

does she notice?
will she say something?

and every day we 
shoot the shit like I
ain’t dreaming about cuffing
her to the base of my heart 
and whipping her hips
under my arms.

“I’m a sinner. I’m a saint.”

and I no longer feel
shame in this skin I’m in,
but this woman . . . 
this fine, Black woman,
skips and dashes,
slips and thrashes her
way into my mind more
than I realize, and I

am taken aback by her
again and again and

*Track playing in the background: Sade, Is It a Crime?

Originally published in soliloque via Medium.

I Have Learned to Celebrate Who I Am

An audio free verse poem

I Have Learned to Celebrate Who I Am

I am content in my skin — took
me some time to be able to
say this without flinching, but I
have finally arrived.

I love how my hips sway
uncontrollably to the sounds of
the music of my people.
I have fallen in love with
my sense of style, my overall
sassiness, and my lack of fear
regarding speaking my mind.

I am strong in my stature and
my thoughts and I am grateful
for my ancestors before me;
they did not think twice about
who they were and what they
offered this nation.

I am carved from unbreakable stone,
washed by overflowing healing waters,
and motivated by a tongue that can cut
you down to size if a debate is invited.

I am not an “Angry Black Woman,” I
simply get angry when you don’t
understand me or worse — you won’t
take the time to understand me.

I have centuries of pain loaded
onto my shoulders — the cross I bear
you will never be able to carry.
It is made for me and my strength.
I am walking the path designed for
where I have to go.

I have learned to celebrate who I am;
every facet, every curve, every minuscule
thought that crosses my mind — all of it.
And with this celebration of self, comes
celebration of my ancestry.

And there is a sense of pride in this
fact that can never be, won’t ever be

Originally published in soliloque via Medium.

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.