a complex taxonomy

I haven’t said it yet.
at sixteen I fell over my overwhelming fear for a boy with blue rim glasses
and when I kissed him a year later
that felt like it.
I was going to marry him – I’m still going to marry him –
so it didn’t matter
he was the only one who was ever going to love me
and I could play straight and narrow forever
in our happy little house.

I haven’t said it yet,
and I figured I’d never need to, since I had Nick.
but something in me squirmed a bit
in that first year out of my Catholic girls college
and the second, and into the third;
something that tickled when I remembered
the hours (and hours) of Katy Perry film clips and
that Callica arc, imprinted on my adolescent grey matter.
but it didn’t matter
because the internet isn’t Real Life,
and I had one of those now.

I haven’t said it yet.
even when Nick said okay, kissing is okay,
because I wanted to be close to her so much that I couldn’t sleep
even though I was worlds of too shy to try.
it seems pretty glaringly obvious now
that I saw her face in every direction, at every compass point,
a undestined destination on my every map –
but it didn’t matter,
because I thought it might just be, well, you know…
exploratory.

I haven’t said it yet,
but I’ve known for ages.
it seems funny to say that I played straight so much,
even when the jig was up,
because I’m fat.
that extra layer of my complex complexes didn’t matter, no,
‘cause so what if you want to fuck girls?
they won’t want you back
better stick with what you’ve got, baby girl
goddesses don’t play with golems.

damnit, I haven’t said it yet
but I dropped enough hints and I opened enough windows
that people are starting to catch a scent.
and under that window, in the damp grass,
I worry I just want her ‘cause she’s so damn soft.
I worry I just want her ‘cause she thinks I’m soft
I wonder if maybe I’d roll over for any femme with a notch on her belt and a compliment on her tongue
if I’d know the difference between her playing with me and just plain playing me.
and all that wondering, that wandering when my hands meet
other hands, other hearts
I thought it didn’t matter
if it was never going to be anything but a game
(it’s not).

I haven’t said it yet.
I didn’t think I really should
what with all those undercuts-vests-piercings-
can’t-bring-their-girlfriend-home gay girls with real problems
and me just passing in the hallway
kindergarten teacher shoes, promise ring around my neck
taking up too much of the couch as it is.
and it didn’t matter, really
I was safe out here,
in the world,
alone.

I haven’t said it yet.
I thought it didn’t matter
if I never found something that fit
I had a someone, we had a something
I could fumble along when somebody asked –
but it all got complicated when I started looking in the mirror
trying to name my own reflection.

I haven’t said it yet.
I was scared of what it might mean to people who didn’t get it.
but that’s it – that’s what doesn’t matter.
it’s about how I relate,
the shape of my selfdom in this space and time –
and this seems like a good one.
I’m here,
I’m queer,
my name is Ella Jean.