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Strengthening Identities Through Spoken Word 

by Nathaniel Warren


I presented two spoken word poems in a group of eleven students led by Dr. Corkery. Like the other students, my poems were deeply personal. I wrote my poems out of personal experience with disabled and transgender identities. My poems are titled Criptid and Network.

The event was organized so that we did not have to read our poems back to back. Before the event, I decided with Dr. Corkery and my peers to read Criptid first, because I wanted my poems to have the greatest impact I could deliver to others. Criptid deals primarily with disability and my being a cane-user because of endometriosis; however, my disability is inseparable from my gender. Specifically, I reference having a uterus while being male.

About the Author

Nathaniel Warren was born in Bethlehem, PA and grew up playing in the woods around Lehighton, PA. As a child, he loved reading and hiking, and still does to this day.  He is the middle child, with an older and a younger brother. He attended the Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School in middle and high school, and is currently pursuing a B.S.E in English with a specialty in Linguistics at Millersville University. Although he is fluent only in English, his interest in linguistics began when taking Latin, German, and French in high school.

Nathaniel began to discover his LGBTQ identity in late 2012, quickly realizing that he did not fit in with the “L”, but the “T”. He began to present more masculinely and came out to family members. He has publicly introduced himself as male since fall 2013. In the following year, he began to show strong chronic illness symptoms, and was later diagnosed with endometriosis. Living with intertwined pain and gender dysphoria has been hard for him, but he wishes to find a way to manage both and continue forward in life and hopes to become a teacher that will help others.

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