WATCH: This Spoken Word Poetry Will Make You Understand How LGBTQ+ People Feel

Way back in college, around two to three years ago, our Speech Communication professor asked us to perform literary pieces in class. One of my classmates read a piece entitled ‘Dear Straight People’ which was originally written and perfomed by Denice Frohman for Women of the World Poetry Slam 2013.

Being a huge ally and a girl who liked a girl before, the poem sincerely struck me and even made me tear up. Now, I’m sharing this in order to somehow help “straight” men and women understand or even just hear how LGBTQ+ people feel.

Love not hate. Understanding instead of judgment.

Here you go.

(Video courtesy of Button Closet)

“Dear Straight People,

Who do you think you are?

Do you have to make it so obvious that I make you uncomfortable?

Why do I make you uncomfortable?

Do you know that makes me uncomfortable?

Now we’re both uncomfortable.

Dear Straight People,

You’re the reason we stay in the closet.

You’re the reason we even have a closet.

I don’t like closets, but you made the living room an unshared space

 and now I’m feeling like a guest in my own house.

Dear Straight People,

Sexuality and gender?

Two different things combined in many different ways.

If you mismatch your socks, you understand.

Dear Hip-Hop,

Why are you fascinated with discovering gay rappers?

Gay people rap.

Just like gay people ride bikes and eat tofu.

Dear Straight People,

I don’t think God has a sexual orientation,  but if she were straight, she’d be a dope ally.

Why else would she invent rainbows?

Dear Straight Women,

I mean, “Straight Women.”

Leave me the fuck alone!

Dear Straight Men,

If I’m flirting with you it’s because I think it’s funny.

 Just laugh.

Dear Straight People,

I’m tired of proving that my love is authentic.

 So I’m calling for reparations.

 When did you realize you were straight?

 Who taught you?

 Did it happen because your parents are divorced?

 Did it happen because your parents are not divorced?

 Did it happen because you sniffed too much glue in 5th grade?

Dear Straight People,

Why do you have to stare at me when I’m holding my girlfriend’s hand like I’m about to rob you?

Dear Straight People,

You make me want to fuckin’ rob you!

Dear Straight Allies,

Thank you, more please!

Dear Straight Bullies,

You’re right. 

We don’t have the same values.

You kill everything that’s different.  I preserve it.

Tell me, what happened to Jorge Mercado? Sakia Gunn? Lawrence King?

 What happened to the souls alienated in between too many high school walls,

who planned the angels of their deaths in math class,

who imagined their funerals as ticker-tape parades,

who thought the afterlife was more like an after party.

Did you notice that hate is alive and well in too many lunch rooms,

taught in the silence of too many teachers,

passed down like second hand clothing

from too many parents.

Dear Queer Young Girl,

I see you.

You don’t want them to see you so you change the pronouns in your love poems to “him” instead of “her.”

I used to do that.

Dear Straight People,

You make young poets make bad edits.

Dear Straight People,

Kissing my girlfriend in public without looking to see who’s around is a luxury I do not fully have yet.

But tonight, I am drunk in my freedom,

grab her hand on the busiest street in Philadelphia,

zip my fingers into hers and press our lips firmly,

until we melt their stares into a standing ovation, imagine that we are in a sea of smiling faces,

even when we’re not and when we’re not,

we start shoveling,  digging deep into each other’s eyes we say,

“Hey Baby, can’t nothing stop this tonight”

because tonight, this world is broken and we’re the only thing that’s going to keep it together.”

How did this poem make you feel? Tell us in the comments.