You have my word

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Tag: gay

I will never call you raven, black bird

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You are the night sky when I close my eyes. This is where I find rest. Your chest cages not one, but two hearts – a sacred space for dancing beneath the stars of all you are. Vast canvas, stippled with magic that’s been missed too easily by those who only chased bright lights. But not you – I could never have missed you. Miss you, yes, but.

Not a chance I could have walked right by without the magic and the moonlight calling out to me for one last love affair with darkness. Pure and peaceful shadow. Gentle. Warm, contrary to how it may look. Ebony grace, not startling or reckless. I will never call you raven, black bird.

While riddled with myths of death and despair, nevermore! – or at least not in this poem. You love all the hells out of me. I traded them in: others’ sins for your hands and my heartache for your skin. Black bird, sing your dark melody and use your wings in this dark dance beneath your evermore sky.

So I close my eyes not to sleep, but to wander in your dreams. Perhaps we’ll meet. When the days are too bright and burning with the busyness of doing, I’ll blink and you are there. When the sun forces shadows into spaces where there should only be music and air, you’ll be there.

My black bird. My night sky. My love affair. My dance; my song. My magic; my moon. It’s all you.

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Queer moon, we are guided by your tides

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The moon is definitely gay. Nothing can sparkle that much and be straight. I mean, if you want to get technical with me, here you go: the moon is a circle so technically it can’t be straight. Anyway.

The moon is definitely queer. Totally in love with the sun and her rays but screws around with the stars in the dark. They don’t mind that he’s a little naughty – that she’s a little naughty – that they’re a little naughty.

The moon would definitely call itself fluid, spreading itself across the day and night sky. Non-binary bright. Lesbian lunar. Bisexual bright. It’s no wonder we’re so affected by the tides. The moon is definitely gay. Nothing can sparkle that much and be straight.

Nothing can sparkle that much despite thousands upon thousand trying to put it out. Nothing can sparkle that much without having been set on fire. Nothing can sparkle that much against the shadows that try and cut it down to size.

Too many shadows have taken too many of your shapes, squashing your fabulous, your fierce, your fight. You, forced to be half-moon – half you – semi-circle so sickle the length of years in your arms. You will outlive centuries of being trapped here.

When they stare at you and point from afar, don’t you dare blink. Don’t you dare look away. Don’t shuffle your feet, gay goddess. Don’t dim your man in the moon face. Look on. Light up. Love. Sparkle. They can learn a thing from you.

When you tell your story, tell the truth

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When you tell your story, make sure to tell the truth. It sounds like an obvious thing, but it’s so easy to elevate or negate parts that don’t sound good enough or sound too good to be true. Tell it how it is, and not how you want people to hear it.

Why the preamble? This coming Sunday is International Coming Out Day, and whether you support it or not, it is what it is. That is part of my story – not elevated or negated.

What’s the big deal? Coming out is about telling the ultimate truth – about yourself and about your world… about myself and about my world.

In celebration of telling the truth, here is my coming out story in brevity but, nevertheless, in full:

I didn’t come out. Well, not officially. The process (because it is a process) of coming out is really just a process of telling the truth – of telling a story. For some, it’s a truth and a story that they have come to accept and love for the first time. For some, it’s a truth and a story that they acknowledge and haven’t yet accepted. That is also OK. What’s important is that it is the truth.

So how did I tell the truth? Someone else tried to do it for me. They told a biased version of my story which blew up like dropping a full bottle of red wine. I’m not saying that some people didn’t know; if you have even two stones knocking between your ears, it’s fairly obvious to see that I’m not a cookie-cut-out girl. Yet, as much as it broke me to be exposed in that way, it also provided a new kind of freedom.

Sometimes pain is the most honest truth.

Hear me: I’m not condoning how out of place that person was, and I’m certainly not thanking them for shoving me out, but I will acknowledge the space that I stepped into. That’s the thing about being in the light.

“Coming out of the closet” is the expression that’s often used and although I don’t completely understand its origin, I do understand the feeling. If you’ve ever stepped into a closet and closed the door or been trapped in a pantry or anything similar, you will know the stifling, desperate, claustrophobic feeling that comes with the confines and you will also know the feeling of relief that washes over you when the door opens again.

It’s no wonder children are afraid of monsters in the closet. Some monsters don’t have teeth, but they do eat at your truth and instil fear in the dark.

Almost two years later and I’m telling the story here, as it is, for the first time. As I said, coming out is a process. It hasn’t come without its breakdowns and wreckage, but it also hasn’t come without its joy and contentment. That is my truth and my story.

So don’t see Sunday as International Coming Out Day… see it as a day for telling the truth, a day for telling your story, no matter what that story is. If it happens to be about coming out, celebrate that as your truth and commit to the process of always telling your truth. Others may not like it, they may not accept it, but it is yours. Be true.

Dear Caitlyn Jenner | Quite honestly

Dear Caitlyn Jenner

Quite honestly, I didn’t recognise you at first glance as I scrolled past the cover of Vanity Fair on my newsfeed yesterday. I have followed your news-drawing story each day – from the triumphs and progress, to the hard days and the tears and the tough choices. Quite honestly, I don’t know if I would have the same courage as you.

You are beautiful. Quite honestly, there will be those who disagree not because you aren’t beautiful but because they don’t understand and that is their own shortcoming. As much as you need them to extend compassion to you, know that they too need your compassion. Quite honestly, I’m fists up and rearing to go this morning as, one by one, people in the office are discovering who you are. Not who you were, who you are. One such discovery was met this morning with: “Wat die vok is verkeerd met hom?” In English, that translates to: “What the fuck is wrong with him?”

Quite honestly, you ignorant imbecile, two things you should be blatantly aware of: firstly, there is nothing “wrong with him”. Secondly, it’s “her”. Quite honestly, Caitlyn, I think I would have been fired had I voiced the explicit opinion I hold so I held my tongue and I am sorry for that. A face skewed by so much disdain should only be met with a fist. That kind of judgement has no business in preserving life – trans or not. We are human.

Quite honestly, I can’t imagine everything that you have gone through – exacerbated by the extensive media coverage. Did that make it easier as you had no choice but to confront every bit of change head on? What kinds of questions did they ask? Did you always give an answer? People can be mean – myself included – and on behalf of humans, I wish you all strength.

All this to remind you that you are beautiful, even when you have bad hair days. This is by no means the end but quite honestly, I think you know that. Beauty is not just defined by external, this is another thing you know. After all, you have been true to yourself and that is most beautiful of all. Do not let them take that away from you. Quite honestly, they will try and you should be prepared to fight. There’s an army standing behind you.

You have opened up a way for people to talk about things they don’t understand, things they don’t support but want to know more about, things they’ve never heard of before, things they can choose to stand up for. Quite honestly, maybe that’s the most courageous thing of all. Yes, you’re the talking point of a lot of conversations but dare I say, quite honestly, that the conversations are more important; you will not always be in every headline, but you have done us the great favour of making it easier to have other conversations, to approach other headlines. This is the legacy that you leave.

Dearest Caitlyn, do not apologise. Do not back down nor make excuses. Do not hide away. Do not doubt yourself. Whether you like it or not, some people will make their own brave decisions because of you. That’s a lot of pressure, but it’s also the easiest thing to accept because you have already accepted yourself.

I take my proverbial hat off to you.

S.