By Yas Necati

I shut the door –

cradle a face that looks like mine

On this side, the paint transfers to my fingers 

every time 

I touch my cheeks

leaving holes in my beard

holes in this masculine self 

that I sometimes use snazaroo

to etch into my face


on the other side

a boy looks back at me

a boy with my eyes and 

maybe my name

maybe another

My girlfriend calls me

Can sometimes

(over the phone)

it is a Turkish name meaning


I see a boy who knows he is

real in a moment


we once walked on the streets,

me and the versions of myself.

now like everyone I am locked indoors

at least here I do not get weird looks

from men who don’t know even one of my names

here I do not get spat at

here I don’t have ‘real boys’ 

lashing their fingers out to my beard,

trying to tear it off

their nails ironically returning to them

with a layer of paint

gothic undertones


as long as I keep the door shut


Yas Necati (they/them) is a writer and performance poet based in London. They explore themes of queer and trans identity, migrant identity, mental health, recovery, community and resistance in their writing. Follow them on Twitter @yasnecati.

This poem is a part of DISTANCED 2.0.

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