A poem on visibility

To celebrate Transgender Day of Visibility on 31 March 2021, the Library is proud to share this wonderful poem, Visible; to be seen, by University of Sydney student Samantha Baker.

Visible; to be seen

 For us who once hid ourselves
in the backs of dresser drawers
behind opaque personas
longing eyes

Visibility is a threat
          to be seen, declaration
               a radical refutation
a siren song to those who have felt our pain.

To be seen
It is to be a contradiction.

When told no, we say yes
When told we are not, we say I am!

To exist!
          to sit in the halls,
          to ride the buses,
          to speak and to be heard,
          to just be!

we silently proclaim –
                    “This is me.
               Am I not enough?
          How could I not be what I am?!”

For when all that once was holy,
has now become profane
what is more divine?
          to be seen as one’s self
          to go by another name
          to look into another’s eyes
          to be seen looking,
different but the same.

For those who had their life blood spilt,
daring just to be
you are not forgotten,
your death not in vain.

Copyright reserved, Samantha Baker 2021

Samantha Baker (she/her) is studying a Graduate Diploma in Psychology at the University of Sydney.

2 thoughts on “A poem on visibility

  1. What a beautiful and timely poem. Thank you so much for sharing it, Samantha.

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