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Lament for the Invisible Lesbians by Alison Binney

Updated: Jun 29, 2023

Lament for the Invisible Lesbians

by Alison Binney

published in Impossible Archetype, Issue 6


You hid yourselves so well, invisible ones,


you disappeared behind the masks you wore:


devoted daughters, governesses, nuns,


companions, witches, bluestockings and whores.


You kept the home fires burning, stepped aside,


played second fiddle, learned to smile and nod,


were always bridesmaids, sometimes even brides,


sought solace in your friendships, gardens, God.


Your vows were camouflaged as pleasantries,


your love-tokens concealed in attic rooms;


your lives are phantom limbs on family trees,


your dear ones’ names are missing from your tombs.


And those of you who couldn’t, who refused


to blot yourselves out, those who never learned


to patchwork discontent with gratitude,


were cast out, beaten, locked up, raped or burned.


For this, invisible sisters, and for all


you buttoned up, for all you were denied,

we colour ourselves in, speak out, stand tall,


join hands with you in sorrow and in pride.




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Marilyn Underwood
Marilyn Underwood
Jun 29, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

Thank you for the words so well placed and meaningful.

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marychristinedelea
marychristinedelea
Jun 29, 2023
Replying to

It is such a sad and powerful poem. I am glad you like it!


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