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Thursday, January 19, 2012

Queer Isn't It Part Two

Authors notes continued:

Then I met this incredible woman I so wanted. She was a lesbian, like had always been a lesbian. She was butch and confident and seemed independent and powerful and gaga wonderful. We sat in the coffeehouse. She drank rocket fuel. I drank herbal tea. She pointed out a beautiful woman at the counter and said, “That’s so and so, she’s bi-sexual. I never sleep with women who sleep with men.” I was so hurt in that moment. It did not stop me from falling in love with her and holding that love for another ten years. When she called I answered even though she only showed up as platonic. She escorted me to more parties, dances, and gatherings than I can count. And she treated me as her date. At this writing, and having finished this novel, I imagine today, that the reason we were never more than friends, though we camped, danced, played, and even cuddled in bed together was because forever, I had slept with a man. There was concrete proof – I had children. 

It is easy to say she was only one person, but she was not. I camped on Wymin’s Land. I personally met lesbians who lived without male interaction. We even had a female ranger for the festivals on state land. Children were allowed at festivals but the boy children had to stay in separate space and the mothers go there to tend them. Even as this was not how I felt or believed, somehow the message passed through. One afternoon my son was outside the front of my home picketing with a sign that read, “Boys are good!”

Yes, boys are good. Men are good. How can we expect to have a successful movement if we forget the inherent goodness of each other? How will we stand against oppression if we are divided against ourselves? When will we stop living by labels and open to the full expression of being human?

My novel addresses these issues in a way I feel is unavailable as of yet. At least I haven’t heard this dialogue. I mean lesbians discussion their attractions to people other than lesbians. The mainstream media play with same sex attractions, but where are the stories from the inside? For my very short journey into the transgender population I met lesbians in relationship with female-male trangender people who felt put out and left out of their previous lesbian communities because they were not lesbians any more. So what are they? And who decides if one is lesbian enough?

I challenge the notion that wearing a label is sufficient. I further challenge the idea that I need a label to live a certain lifestyle or even that I need a partner. Single does not mean I am looking, or interested. Because I am not with a woman does not negate my sexual preference. And just because I am with a woman doesn’t mean that I have no other ideas or interest in how, when, or with who I build my life, share my home, or support my community.

Somehow, homosexual had become all about who we are sexing and who sexes us. We wear the pins, carry the signs, and wave the banner, but when will we start celebrating the diversity of being human. And beyond tolerance, it is time we practice acceptance. My hope is that we can create a space where we can openly talk about how and what we feel free of the fear that we will lose the love and support of those we hold dear.

Thank you reading my work.


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