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Google: trans man with long hair

by ExOmelas

A/N: I'm really not a poet, which is why this merges into prose at points. But I've really tried to do some interesting word choice, not be too cliché, and get a feeling of empowerment across. Hopefully at least some of this has worked.


I look down at the chest.

Those lumps.

Sometimes they're my friends. They keep me company.

But more and more these days

They're extra.


My hair scratches at my neck.

My ears stick out.

Or push it up all funny.

It's greasy.

It's tuggy.

The dysphoria at the hairdressers really did it in.


The middle aged TV detective who just happens to be the man on screen -

I could be him one day.

Shetland jumper, crumpled jeans, nondescript mop:

I put that image on myself.

The extra is edited out.

But my dumpster fire is missing and I feel alone.

Like when the wind is so cold it's like you don't even have trousers on. There's ice on the back of your thighs and you feel like anything could happen next.


My hair is my comfort blanket, draped across my back when I'm a wee boy frightened of the world, when I'm curled up on my windowsill, staring down at my street.

And wondering where I go next.

Love for it is the closest thing I own to self-validation.

My hair is my best friend.

My hair is me.

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562 Reviews

Points: 14535
Reviews: 562

Sun May 26, 2019 10:05 am
FlamingPhoenix wrote a review...

Hello, FlamingPhoenix here with a short review for you on this lovely day, and like always to help get this work out the green room.

Let's start.

So I think @Marrigan did an amazing job pointing out the things that needed to be pointed out. So I'm just going to talk about what I liked about your poem.

I love the name you picked, it was rather eye catching, and I have been meaning to review this for quit a while. So it finally drew me in. And I'm glad I did come and read it.
You tell quit a story with your words, and that's what makes the reader stay a little longer. And I really like what you have here, you have a beginning and and end in this poem, and those type of poems I love the most.
And the story you have written so well over here has so much emotion attached to it, giving it more meaning, and sometimes allowing the reader to relate.
Another thing that was really well done, is were you put the breaks between the lines, putting them into their own paragraphs. That way it makes the read a little smoother.
And I think you put all the punctuation in all the right places, making the read enjoyable and giving it a good flow.

Over all this was a really well written poem and I just loved reading it and getting the chance to review it. I do hope you will keep writing and post another poem soon on YWS. I hope you have a great day or night.

Your friend
Reviewing with a fiery passion.

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860 Reviews

Points: 29471
Reviews: 860

Fri May 24, 2019 5:22 am
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Morrigan wrote a review...

Heyo Dougal. I'm Morrigan, and I'm here to review your poem.

Dang, you've posted a lot of prose on this site! I was wondering why we hadn't crossed paths before, seeing as you've been here a while, and I have on and off as well (or maybe we have and you've had a name change). But anyway, pleasantries aside, I noticed you listed this under "Actual serious attempt at poetry" so I will do my best to help you get this rough diamond into beautifully polished form.

So the first thing I notice is that you do a lot of telling in this poem. You tell the reader "my hair is my best friend" and "my hair is me." Poetry, even more so than prose, is a show, not tell zone. So give us imagery and verbs that convince us that your hair is your security blanket, and that you feel comfort in it. It's not just in the last stanza-- it's throughout. You do give us some imagery with the hair, but it doesn't make us feel a certain way. One way to give more action and be less "tell-y" in your poem is to use more active verbs. You use conjugations of the verb "to be" more than anything else in this piece. "Is" and "was" and "could be" all have their place, but not here. Give us something else. Instead of

I could be him one day,
you could write something like
I imagine myself as him one day
I fill with envy at his Shetland jumper...

Obviously, the change is for you to make, and those are just examples. But go through your poem and see if you can give us more imagery just by changing the verbs into more active ones!

The only other big thing that I noticed in this piece is that the stanzas don't seem to connect very well. I understand that they all go together, but something in me tells me that you can make this more cohesive. It just feels disjointed. I would offer a fix, but honestly, I'm not completely sure what's giving me this feeling of disorientation. Perhaps it's the third stanza. It feels out of place. I know what you're trying to do in that stanza-- you're trying to further support the idea of dysphoria in the poem. This might be a crazy idea, but try inserting the man on the television earlier in the poem. Use him more as a focal point, and maybe try contrasting his hair with your preference for long hair. But again, I'm not sure that's really the problem. But maybe experiment with that, anyway. Who knows! It might be the thing that's throwing off the feel.

Overall, I did like this poem. My favorite part was the bit about the wind whipping through your trousers. I really connected with the image there. Keep thinking about little moments like that, that people everywhere can connect to, but don't necessarily think about all the time. It's like a nice little surprise when you connect to something you're not thinking about at the moment.

I hope that this review proves useful for you! Let me know if you have any questions, and keep on writing, whether it's poetry, prose, songs, or whatever! And of course, don't forget to keep YWSing!

ExOmelas says...

Hey, thanks for the review! Not that you need me giving you review feedback but this was exactly the right amount of encouraging and deconstructing. I totally get what you mean about showing rather than telling and will see what I can do with this :D

ExOmelas says...

Also, our paths have crossed once actually. I reviewed for dead musicians and honestly sometimes I still get the melody I made up for it stuck in my head. It's very haunting!

Morrigan says...

Oh siiiiiick yeah I remember you

An arrow can only be shot by pulling it backwards. So when life is dragging you back with difficulties, it means that life's going to launch you into something great, so just focus and keep aiming.
— Unknown