‘Gender Goals’ takes the reader through a poetic journey

ZINES_gender goals

Gender Goals

Chapbook, Jesse Coons, 19 pgs, jessecoons.com, @birenza, PWYC

Don’t get too attached to the stories here for they’ll be over with a flick of the page. In Jesse Coons’ Gender Goals, the reader is taken through a first-person poetic journey that’s both captivating and confusing.

I appreciate the variety of poems with some ending after just four lines and others lasting a page or two. Coons writes in a fragmented manner while telling stories about their own experience with gender norms and identity.

“I revealed my namesake; Uncool, girly, marrying my name’s Neutrality with the incongruence Of femininity. And yet, and yet, And yet I loved the feeling of Connection to a lineage,” Coons writes in a poem titled “Targets.”

This zine feels like a deep diary written by the author, but I find myself lost and disconnected from what they’re expressing. You’ll need to give this a read over at least two or three times to really dig into the words and understand the emotional story they’re telling.