Lost and Not Yet Found

This has been written for the Gender Exploration Carnival, specifically for April’s theme of “Neurodivergence/Mental Health” hosted by Em.

I’ve mentioned it before for this carnival, but I haven’t really talked about the sense that my gender feels obscured or potentially briefly leaves due to depression in online spaces. I’m not sure that this is what people mean by agender, genderflux, or even a neurogender influenced by depression.

It more feels like I’ve lost something, but I’d have to get through the embarrassment of admitting I lost in the first place before I could label the experience. I tried to see if I could somehow communicate this feeling of obscuring and maybe losing in a poem.

Title: Lost and Not Yet Found

The fog creeps out of the ground,
descending from the hills,
and settles over the trees and landscape
like a comfortable blanket
(not a pretty one, kept carefully clean
of cat hair and crumbs),
like a friend’s arm curling around
your shoulders on the couch.

You can’t see outside your window,
and for a moment, your brain can’t
fill in what’s supposed to be there,
even though you know the trees
and the curves of the hills remain.

Depression creeps out of the corners,
and settles over your mind
like a well-worn and familiar blanket,
like a sad but consistent friend.
Your gender fades into the whisps of fog,
and for a moment, your brain can’t
fill in what’s supposed to be there.

You can’t see the outlines of it,
light does strange things within the grayness,
and your questions get swallowed up
(your voice sounding quiet and strange).
The idea that fog can make something disappear
unnerves the hindbrain, and yet…

A fleeting moment of relief will be there
when the fog gets burnt off by the sun,
and you can see your gender remains
where it had been left, like a tree
returning to the crisp view of the hills.
You didn’t lose it. This time.


One thought on “Lost and Not Yet Found”

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