Invisible? Man, I Wish

This selection is paired with The Invisible Man by H. G. Wells. Get NonBinary Review Issue #21 at

No, I can’t say I ever met             —was it Griffin?
but I knew a man—let’s          call him D—
who was that much of a dick | that’s             not what
the D stands for       (here)      but it fits | of course,
he’d say           the D stood for                       discovery
or maybe delight | but he’d be wrong
—not that he’d listen        god    —
the thing about D was                         he thought he was
—god, that is | just like fucking Griffin
god complexes             everywhere | the man was
insufferable! that is     we suffered him | dear God
did we suffer                           | what’s worse, he was a serial
offender | no novel could detail his sins          adequately
: the mansplaining       the pompadour           the strut          the strut
the confidence
god grant me the confidence
of a mediocre white man, ego
            bandage and salve for every blot


D didn’t like listening              to the demands of women (namely
his bosses)      he thought he knew better      | he burned down
any bridges he’d built with us             so we fired
records of our encounters with him                day by day                  like witches
and danced      in the glow      —as much as we could—
while he malingered

berating | harassing | targeting | oil-slicking | bloviating | haranguing | tarnishing | obfuscating


anyway we wished he was invisible
and one day
he was

but that didn’t make us any safer

Gretchen Rockwell is a poet and supplemental instructor of English at the Naval Academy Preparatory School in Newport, RI. Gretchen’s work has appeared in Glass: Poets Resist, Into the Void, Noble/Gas Qtrly, New Plains Review, and elsewhere. Gretchen enjoys writing poetry about gender and sexuality, history, space, and unusual connections.