“Transition Sonnet IX” by Shosha Orol Brown

To be wrapped in thick cloth and tucked away
is one way of becoming a Jewish woman.
My unsunned thighs snug beneath black tights
and an ankle length jean skirt.
Soft shirts too baggy to tell on my flat chest.
High crew neck reveals no breast
hair. Hair, hair, to be worshipped and hidden
to be brushed and buffed for grand luster
then silked and scarfed away from all but one
so only she will know it naked and drunk,
the medulla, the cortex, and the curl.
My thirsty hair, vicious melanin-eater hair
that revels in the mirror, piles on and
twists around, staring at her own thick self.


Shosha Orol Brown is a trans Jewish poet from Raleigh, NC, writing with the texts, tunes, and stories passed down from their mixed heritage family. Shosha completed an MFA at NC State University, and received an Academy of American Poets prize while at UNC Chapel Hill. Their poetry can be read in recent or forthcoming issues of Driftwood Press, Nimrod, Santa Ana River Review, and Storm Cellar.