An Extraordinary Price


For Transgender Day of Remembrance


They paid with their lives, for someone else’s unease
That the rage of a bruised ego,
Could only be repaid in kind with bruises dark and angry
That your damaged swagger demands to be healed
With a balm of blood, sticky and warm
That embarrassment could be fatal,
Defies understanding
From a maniac’s lust to destroy those apart
To those that find joy in the suffering of others
The dangers of this world are real
Real as the feelings that compel us to be,
And to be the persons we are
For rewards that seem elusive and a future unclear
We risk consequences, unforgiving and everlasting
We brave all this and a thousand other slights and indignities
In a quest to arrive finally at life of authenticity
The journey long, So many fall by the wayside
Each year the list of lives lost to hate and despair
Grows longer and longer
Each week brings news of another lost and then yet another
Each year we lament their lives cut short
We cry for the loss of their voices from our chorus
Each year we speak their names, remember their faces
And vow never to forget.

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