It has been my nature to be outside...to love on what’s vulnerable and alive, confident and ever moving and present, like nature. Vulnerability is not usually associated with masculinity.

Afé Abeni’

He/Him have never been nature’s preferred pronouns. And yet, Afé Abeni’s lifelong relationship with nature has been integral in his journey towards identification and acceptance as a trans Jamaican man. 

The ease with which nature demonstrates the beauty of acceptance, individuality and expression here is stunning.

Afé’s relationship to trees is particularly inspiring, as he notes their power by just existing as they are and never trying to be one another. Never trying to tear down, reshape or remake another’s existence but just fully being themselves. Being able to just exist where they see fit or where is fitting for them.

To a great extent, trees have allowed for clarity and self confidence to reside in me permanently. Nature in its constancy is vulnerable, alive, confident, paced and ever in process and presence. Nature reminds me that it’s perfect to just BE. Nature holds me as it anchors me in the truth of now. Verdancy, especially, allows me to exist in the expansiveness of love. It is healing for me to commune with the earth and surrender to its push and pull. My identity reclaims and redefines my idea of male-ness, conforming to my own rhythm. I identify as a trans-man and, like nature in its vulnerability, I am ever changing.

Afé Abeni’
Creative Credits

Photographer: Henry Robinson/ @oh_henry 

Muse: Afé Abeni/ @tr33._.boy