i’d like to hold your hand
when we walk down the street
like some of the other
couples we meet
though we have shared love
for a number of years
holding your hand
still brings up old fears

which seems sort of silly
for something so easy
but there are good reasons
it makes me feel queasy

unlike the couples
mentioned above
we’re a couple comprised
of two men in love

so we could hold hands
but we might be bashed
taunted or threatened
or thoroughly trashed
for something as simple
as a little affection
in public
in tandem
a harmless connection

but harmless it’s not
anything but
if we should run into
a weirdo or nut
who doesn’t think streets
are meant for the sight
of men holding hands
on a sweet summer’s night

they do it in europe
without batting an eye
but try it in texas
and get ready to die
and heaven forbid
you pass by a church
and be spotted by those
on a high holy perch

’cause they celebrate love
while reviling our kind
and keep fear and hate
firmly in mind
so holding your hand
could cause physical harm
as well as damnation
and moral alarm

but lately i’ve noticed
some promising trends
in cities and neighborhoods
where we’re among friends

and that’s other couples
with identical plumbing
holding the hand
of their partners
and humming along
as gay as you please
carefree and nonchalant
fully at ease

now i understand
why the sight can be shocking
’cause i used to perceive it
as jarring and rocking
like anything different
from the usual form
but after awhile
it’s part of the norm

i particularly notice
in old provincetown
where gays only held hands
after sundown
when the tourists and tour boats
had left for the day
and the fabulous fairies
came out to play

now everyone mixes
the whole day through
parents with children
and grandparents too
and all sorts of couples
gay, straight and rand
walk down the street
holding the hand
of the one they love most
(well at least for the day)
and no one i’ve noticed
has died from dismay

society’s standing
no pillars have crumbled
no lightning has struck
no thunder has rumbled

of course we can’t marry
that’s thoroughly banned
but i’d like to tarry
holding your hand

posted by admin on June 1, 2002, at 1:00 am | filed under poetry | no comments »

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