Sometimes, it's when they're quiet, even polite.
Sometimes, it's how they look at you day after day that finally gets to you.
They squint at you, like they can't see.
It's as if by squinting
they might get a better make on you.
If they're in a crowd, they shift their eyes
so their friends can't tell they're looking at you.
You can read the fear behind the smirk,
The hatred just past the disgust.
You worry it's your paranoia.
and you always hope it's only your paranoia.
(Confidence, they've told you, helps you pass.)
But there's always one of them who looks at you with longing.
And that scares you the most,
Because if you let that longing into your heart, you have to accept yourself
just the way you are.
from Gender Outlaw by Kate Bornstein
I like it, not just for how it describes the quandary of the transgendered, but really a universal experience at times, for different reasons.