science fiction

my body is a science experiment.
my gender is a social experiment.

i was in the gym earlier today
and saw a man about my age 
carefully measuring out protein shake mix
trying to get the right amount
of water — of liquid
with the dry, coarse, brown flakes
so no one could mistake
his manhood.

as he shook the bottle
i wondered what it was like 
to live out your gender as a science experiment

i realized that my transmasculine 
is a science experiment
except like the young man
with protein coarsing through his veins
the experiment is for the cis.

try this new method of t
try this new form of injection
you aren’t masculine enough, boy
i’ll give you what makes you a man.

you will always be chasing after that beard
after that girl
after those muscles

no, i don’t know this consequences of this drug
pills can ruin your liver
injections can harm your thighs and buttox

we won’t test new methods
cause trans people are dependent 
on what we give them.

pull down your pants
turn around
this will only hurt a pinch, babe.

in my mind i joke about it
but there is no joke
about another carol, becki, sharol — 
sticking another needle in my ass.

“there’s an easier way to do it”
my mind goes to
but it’s already too late.

i wonder sometimes
if it’s just another mechanism
of justification for their attraction to me
a re-enforcing of their heterosexuality

the amount of white women
felt owed to me 
once i “disclose”

they can’t just be attracted 
to my trans body and identity
they have to justify and re-imagine
re-imagine an idealized heterosexuality

the boy next door without 
the “necessary” equipment of violence

the boy next door 
who understands bleeding and cramps
on an intimate level.

i once had a high school counselor
who told me not to worry
that women would find me 
attractive, because — 
i know things that other boys don’t know

i thought
how perverse
this person, this woman
exploiting her power
to teach me heterosexuality

sexualizing me
without even realizing it
treating my gender like a social experiment
and treating my body like a science experiment.