Sex Talk

On a recent Disability After Dark, Andrew Gurza talks about after sex self-care. Not the clean up but the emotional resonance – for him sex isn’t as simple as dropping one’s pants so there is more emotional stuff to be dealt with. One of the things he finds helpful is to talk about it with someone – in this case that someone is everyone who listens to his podcasts 🙂


I’m certainly frank in my writing about sex, about sex acts, about the kind of men I like but I have no one person in my life that I talk to about my actual sex life. Even in my blog here I don’t go on much about specific men, or about frequency. In a previous blog I talked about slut shaming. There is that old joke that a slut is anyone getting more sex than you.

There’s also a cultural bias that sex isn’t spiritually fulfilling if you have it with more than the one ideal person. Sleeping around isn’t something nice men who are spiritually sound do or if they do they certainly don’t talk about it or flaunt the fact that they do. Hearing about someone else’s sex life can boring, right, unless it is full of wild kinky stuff – like that weekend they were wrapped in vinyl & handcuffed to a bed in the honeymoon suite at the Ritz Carlton (not my story).

The fact is I do ‘sleep around.’ I see the same guys regularly – some work shifts, some don’t live that near me, some can only escape the spouse every now & then, some don’t want to be overly emotionally involved beyond having great regular sex with someone they enjoy being with.

Most of the sex talk I do hear from other’s is either about the lack of it or the bad experiences. The good we tend to keep to ourselves, maybe as way of not jinxing it 🙂

My Secret Plan

mom always liked him best

dad was always picking on me

I could never get a fair shake

he was always some teacher’s pet

I wasn’t even the class clown

he had lots friends

I had none

even new kids I met

became his friends

too busy to play with me

I was too young

not smart enough

not cute enough

I never played the game

any game

as well as anyone else

I gave up trying

who needs it anyway

too much work


I’ll leave all that to him

it won’t last

it can’t last

I’ll keep up my muttering

I know how to gnaw at that foundation

when he falls

and I know he’ll fall

the way will be clear me

that’s my secret

not needing the friends

to make my way the way he has

they’ll see he’s using them

the teacher will see

my parents will realize

they should have loved me best

by then it’ll be too late

for them

so follow him while you can

his fall

will be my revenge


Chapbooks available:


kiss3on going 🙂 when new podcast are posted:  Disability after Dark  iTunes

June 9-10: attending: Capturing Fire 2017 – flight & hotel booked already

check out these poets from  Capturing Fire 2015 & 2016

August 31-Sept.3 – I have my ticket already


November 1 – 30 Participating NaNoWriMo


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Commie Pinko Fag


Started a new set of prompts – I love lists of things – this one will prove to be endlessly productive for another couple of years – 227 Rules For Monks. These are from the 30 nissaggiyas – 5  Not to accept a robe from a bhikkhunī who is not a relative.

Commie Pinko Fag

My mother

was sure the RCMP

would take an interest in me

because I had a pen pal

from Czechoslovakia


at that time

in Cape Breton

I had pen pals from a round the world

New Zealand Trinidad Uganda


but because Czechoslovakia

was a Communist state

my mother was sure

our family would fall under suspicion

that our house would be under surveillance

I thought she was joking


I was more interested in the stamps

than I was in the letters

in which my Czech friend talked about

schools music

we exchanged photos

I thought my mother was foolish

the image of a car across the street from our house

with officers watching us

with binoculars

made me laugh

or would they be reading the mail before I got it

I even thought

the non-capitalist nature of communism

made sense

it sounded fair

the red scare

the arms race

struck me then as being

USA protectionism

to preserve their status quo


she started a sense of paranoia

that I’ve never fully cast off

her stress on the importance

of not calling attention to one self

to appear bland & non-threatening

in a world in which

calling attention to oneself

was dangerous

it wasn’t as if

my search for worlds outside my own

was designed to call attention to myself

any more than being queer

was a ‘hey look at me’ decision


of course my mother grew up in a time

when Communism was a threat

according to the papers

spies where everywhere

and were recruiting

queer teens to undermine

the fabric of civilization

as if being an abomination unto the lord

wasn’t undermining enough


I never did adapt to the

cloak of invisibility

there wasn’t one that fit properly

no matter who handed it to me

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The Coffee Queen

The Coffee Queen

I walked out

yeah I know I’m nobody to them

not selling me a cup of coffee

isn’t going to affect

their salary

their bottom line

five bucks less in the register

it’s not as if

it’s the only coffee shop on the street

I’m even willing to wait in line

as long as the line is moving

but if there are three sales associates

behind the counter

& I’m the only customer

waiting to be served

one of you should at least acknowledge me

not roll your eyes at each other

or chat

backs turned

or see me

then go to do something else


I walked out without a word


I do this often

being the invisible man

has its drawbacks

I’m a nobody

no influence

merely a person who expects service

someone who has experienced

can I help you sir

oh yes let me show you where that is

is there anything else

in an ordinary drug store chain


sorry to keep you waiting

this one’s on the house


now I don’t want those servers

to lose their jobs

or even apologize

for being understaffed

or having to work to a clock

I walk out

wondering if there’s

a camera monitoring

that some manager will see

them so busy

see me walking out

and they’ll watch it together

shake their heads

saying some people have no patience


who does he think he is

the Queen of England

This take on Law 34 is more a reflection on my impatience than on my regal demeanour. On my morning walks I usually stop after about 30 minutes for a sugary snack & some days for a coffee or a hot chocolate. I have an array of different coffee shops that I’ll stop at. If I like one I’ll hit it regularly. SA good one is enough – usually depending on what cupcakes or scones they offer &, of course, the service.

I am more patient with the indie spots but if the line up is too long I may not even go in – I don’t want a cookie that bad that I’ll wait more then five minutes for service. As the piece says there are lots of coffee shops, at least in Toronto there are. I have left Tim Ho’s, Starbucks, even McD’s if the service is slow. Why people wait until they are asked to pay before looking for their money puzzles me – you know that money is going to be at the bottom of shoulder bag that takes ages to find. I don’t blame the server for that but I’m not waiting either while someone checks on their cell phone exactly what their co-workers want or finds a card that works.

But when, as all too often in the case, there are four servers on duty, one customer ahead of me & once they’ve done with that one they wander off as if I wasn’t there – I’m gone. Or they banter too much & don’t hear my order or the cafe music is so sound they ask twice what I want – I’m gone. Or there are seven people ahead of me & only one server on active duty while two other servers are gabbing with each other. I’m out of there.

I know my five bucks isn’t that vital to them anyway and there is always another cookie nearby. Just don’t keep me waiting too long for it.


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Lazarus Kiss.21

Sis amplexibus Amor alios mututa memini et amoris in mutationes memini.

May you be embraced by a love beyond recall that alters others

and a love within recall that alters you.



Once Alex was wearing dry shorts and tee-shirt Harris waited till he had wrung his wet clothes out before putting them into the dryer.

“So ya can do wash right here?” Alex asked. “Beats sloggin’ to a laund’amat.

“Yep but these condo sized units take more loads to get the job done. Anything more than two sheets, I have to take downstairs to the laundry room here.”

Harris’s clothes were more than a few sizes too large for Alex. Alex’s hairy arms and legs looked out of place in clothes that Harris was used to wearing. He had avoided looking when Alex dried off and changed inside the doorway because he didn’t want to track all that water all over the place.

“Sorry about the bad fit. I’ve always like baggy. More comfortable. I hope you don’t mind the Bizzaro World tee.”

“Nah. It’s cool. Never cared ‘bout comic book stuff. Keepin’ up with school was ‘nough readin’ for me.”

They were both nervous, unsure of what to do or say. Harris felt that Alex was watching his every move.

“Can I get you a drink. How about a coffee to warm you.” Harris went to the kitchen. He opened the can of ground coffee, spilling it in the process. “Crap.”

“Nah, Harris I’m fine.” he reached over to help scoop up the spill. Their hands touched and both flinched back.

“You seem as unsure as I am.” Harris shrugged. He got a couple of beers out of the fridge, opened them and handed one to Alex.

“Like I told ya I don’t know what’s goin’ on wit me. I’ve always been into pussy, ya know. This is totally fucked.”

“Me too.” Harris went into the living room and sat in an armchair. Alex sat on the couch.

Alex looked around. “Nice place. You own.”

“Eventually.” He wanted to study Alex but didn’t want to be caught staring too hard. “You?”

“I share a shoe box wit m’ girl, Linda, ‘bout four years now.”

They listened to rain.

“What are we … I mean ….” Harris stuttered. “I’ve never been with a guy. Never wanted to.”

“Same here.” Alex scratched his belly. Belly was the first things guys flashed in the porn he’d watched.

“It’s not as if I wanted to either.”

“Me too. S’like someone hypnotized me an’ I can’t resist.”

“I’m cursed.” Harris blurted out. Maybe if he told the other party in the spell or whatever it was it would be broken.

“Cursed?” Alex slumped on the sofa, spread his knees to make his cock bounce up inside his shorts.

“It’s difficult to explain.” His eyed the heft of Alex’s cock yet felt no desire. He explained to Alex what he understood of the curse. As he talked he saw Alex was getting agitated. “I don’t know what this is going to result in. I mean meeting you. That you remember me and I remember you and all that. It’s never happened before, like this, even with a woman.”

Alex got up and took the two steps to Harris. He yanked Harris to his feet roughly and kissed him. Harris shoved his tongue into Alex’s mouth. They kissed for a few minutes. Harris almost lost his balance and held to Alex to keep from tumbling them both to the couch. He was aroused and he saw that Alex was aroused. It didn’t matter to him what gender Alex was. He wanted sex.

“What’s this is going to result in?” He tried to push Alex away.

Alex’s hands moved along Harris’s back down to his butt.

A phone rang.

“Isn’t mine.” Harris said.

“Ignore it. It’s mine.”

They sat on the couch. Alex’s erection bulging in Harris’s borrowed shorts. The phone rang again.

“Crap. Sorry.” He answered it. “Yeah …. yeah it was my turn to clean the kitchen … I’m busy …. okay okay …. no, I’m not with some bitch …. whatever.” He shut the cell and turned it off. “Sorry, the girlfriend.”

“Not getting along?” Harris stood. He was frightened. He had enjoyed the kiss but was he really enjoying or was it part of the curse.

“Who knows. Women.”

“The rain is letting up.”

“Going to get muggy.” Alex patted the couch beside him. “Sit.”

“ I can’t. Meeting you is one thing but …. sex … is another.”

“Ya reckon this is easy fer me? Do ya? I want to get the fuck out of here, ya know, but part of me wants ta, no, has ta be here, has ta do this.”

“Then what?” Harris’s voice rose.

“Forget each other. Isn’t that what ya said happens?”

“IF that was going to happen it would have by now.”

“Let’s find out.” He got up pulling the tee-shirt off and letting the oversized shorts drop.

“I … I can’t.” Harris stared at the body in front him. The hair on Alex’s arms and legs faded out while his chest was nearly hairless, a ruffle of it from his navel into the pubis around his thick cock. His solid abs were flesh and muscle. So Cyclops’s abs were real, not part of his costume. No tattoos.

“What the fuck!” Alex kicked the coffee table. Beer bottles went flying. He stopped and took a deep breath. “Okay. Okay. I unnastand this is as scary ta you as it is ta me.”

Harris looked away. He had never looked another naked male for this long. In high school he kept his eyes as much to nothing as he could in the gym class change room.

Harris’s cell phone began to ring. It was under the end table. Alex moved the table away staring at Harris as if to dare him to answer it.

“It’s the ring that someone’s downstairs.” Harris picked it up. “Hello.”

“Hey Dog, what’s shaking.”

“Trev!” He looked at Alex. “What brings you to my door.”

“Listen Dog, I got a hold of my auntie. She says she feels your vibration and wants you come see her asap.”

“I’ll be down in five.”

“And bring a gift for her.”

Harris shut his cell. Bring a gift?

“I have to go. That was Trevor. You know, the guy I usually show up at Story with.”

“Haf ta go?” Alex face reddened.

“He’s here. Down in the lobby. What did you want me to do? Ask him up?” There was no way he could explain Alex away. “He saw you kiss me in front of Story the other night.”

Harris’s phone rang again.

“I’m on my way Trevor give me a minute to get my pants on, alright.”

“Buzz me in. I’ll help you pick out decent jeans. Don’t want no sweats for my auntie.”

“Trust me Trevor. I’ll be right there.” he shut the phone off.

“Your clothes should be dry.” He went to the drier and took them out. “It’s stopped raining so they won’t get any wetter.” He grabbed a couple of the sample SofSknX soaps he’d taken from work. “You can get off on the first floor and walk down.”

“Whatever.” Alex pulled on his own shorts.

“How are your sneakers?” He was sorry to see Alex’s body disappear into clothes.

“Soggy.” Alex rolled his socks into a ball. “No need ta get dese wet again.” He shoved his other clothes into his gym bag.

While Harris went into his room and pulled on jeans and a clean tee-shirt.

“I’m set. Let’s go. Before Trev follows someone in and comes to the door.”

They got into the elevator. Harris punched one and ground. When it got to two he pulled Alex to him and kissed him.

“I’ll call you.” He pushed Alex off at the first floor and continued down to ground level.

Trev was pacing in the outer lobby.

“Dog, why did you make me wait down here.”

“My place is more of a mess than I want you to see.” He looked around. “I thought you had your Aunt Nelly with you.”

“It’s Auntie Nilasha. We’ll go to her. East end. Near Vic Park.”

The rain had stopped but hadn’t cooled things off at all. The air was damp and fog blurred the tops of buildings around them.

As they walked to the subway Alex jogged past them and turned to wave.

“Nice night gents.” He disappeared into the fog.

“Hey isn’t that the dude from Story.” Trevor said.

“Could be. Tell me about your Auntie Nilasha.”

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Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

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Larry Coryell

Larry Coryell is well represented in my collection with: The Restful Mind, Offering, The Real Great Escape, Spaces, Spaced Revisited, w/Monk, Eleventh House, Escape, Two For The Road, The Lion, Fallen Angel – by no means an exhausted collection but enough for me 🙂

He rode in on the first wave of jazz-rock fusion with his Eleventh House group that featured, at various points, Chick Corea, Steve Marcus, Billy Cobham even even John McLaughlin. The albums weren’t as futuristic as Weather Report nor as challenging as say Miles Davis’s Bitches Brew – but they were inventive & accessible.

I had some musical friends in Cape Breton who were fans of his – he was a guitarist’s guitarist. I certainly enjoyed him & the various permutations of his recordings in this period. Some acoustic duets, one with him singing as he attempted a great chart break through – which never happened. I had enough off his material by the time I moved to TO & didn’t add much new until a stumbled across some cassettes of his later CTI work in a dollar store for a dollar. His sound had matured but had taken on a more Wes Montgomery m.o.r feel & I wasn’t compelled to add more as a result.

In the mix with the mp3 sets is a load of Les Baxter: pure cocktail exotica one can’t enough of. Some great work by Coryell’s sidemen – who had careers of their own: Billy Cobham; Steve Marcus (fantastic jazz sax covers of things like 8 Miles High); Steve Smith w/ Marcus. And a dash of real exotica with Echun Okiry: a authentic & hypnotic Voodoo ritual set (not trance inducing: one needs swamp mist for that).


Would you say that 52 years is a long time or just time enough for: a glimpse of what life has to offer? That age thing – when is old old? To the young everything is old but what is old to me? I lack clear awareness of this as being middle or whatever aged.

I suppose with a rather young boyfriend it’s easier for me to lose context of age. Limp Bisket or the Beatles – music doesn’t help much – I can see John Lennon the same age forever, Jim Morrison never ages, neither does Jimi Hendrix – such a blessing to be trapped in celluloid.

I’ve come this far safe sound healthy alert and happy.

I remember reading a short story many years ago, I must have been in my mid-twenties. The writer wrote about his affair with an older woman – he was 19 & made that very clear from the outset. I saw this older woman as in her early 50’s – I guess that was my sense of older – at some point he mentions she was turning 30! Since when was that old?

Here I sit like many others on a birthday. Looking over my garden and not Tinturn Abbey (I should look that poem up and see what it tells me about being 30). The garden grows and changes in ways that I enjoy, that I attempt small control over by putting seeds here, paving stones there – but the motions of life will do what is to be done regardless or in spite of my little attempts to direct it. Forget-me-nots spring up where there never were any.

Seeds planted last summer finally germinate. Pests dig up, snail munch away, growth doesn’t happen or goes boing!! Like the wisteria – a few tidy trims this spring and this year a vine like I’ve never had before.

I’ve learned to let life take it’s little changes and balances with me as well. Letting go, cutting off areas that needs to be trimmed back, empty drawers of aging scrap paper that hasn’t been used as scrap in the ten, or is it twenty-five years I’ve had it stashed away for that rainy day.

Let go and get on with it.

A few cards, snail & electronic, trickle in. New shoes this afternoon to replace a pair I bought years ago in Montreal. Almost unwilling to let go of them though the soles have let go of the uppers – you know a dab of the right glue would give them another ten years of life, wouldn’t it.


Today is a day for something new not something saved. A day to donate that growing pile of clothes in the closet so make space for the next growing pile of clothes. To plant a few more seeds, it’s never too late for another flower, for another lover, for another spin.

Miracles happen. This in mine. Grateful to age and stunned to be alive this brief span.

Chapbooks available:


kiss314257567_1162384753819933_3271661288579707843_oon going 🙂 when new podcast are posted:  Disability after Dark  iTunes

June 9-10: attending: Capturing Fire 2017 – flight & hotel booked already

check out these poets from  Capturing Fire 2015 & 2016

August 31-Sept.3 – I have my ticket already


November 1 – 30 Participating NaNoWriMo


Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee in Washington – sweet,eh?

Like my pictures? I post lots on Tumblr


This marks my 1010 blog post. When I started this blog in September 2011 it was recommended as a way of enlarging one’s audience for relentless self-promotion. There was talk about how a blog would generate a vast following of eager fans & one’s life would the talk of the world. I quickly realized that only happens for blogs about kittens & puppies.

Over the years my following has slowly built to 200. People follow me because they want to not excuse they want me to follow them back so they can spam me with their posts about kittens & puppies. Perhaps spam is too harsh a word. I follow a fair number, some of which I actually read & sometimes comment on. What I read regularly has to give me content I enjoy & not just another simpering poem about their girlfriend.

I’ve added photos, nearly always my own, which lead me to my Tumblr photo blog. I started slowly with reviews of poetry shows, theatre I’d seen, my travels & workshops I was taking. Gradually my focus expanded & contract at the same time. The blog is ultimately about me me me & how I see the world. As it became more structured it started to write itself. As it became more regular – at least 5 posts a week – it was easier, if a bit more time consuming, to keep it up. I love getting hits from around the world & for surprising places – one day over a dozen from Kuwait! North & South Korea! It’s become an effective, if limited, tool for sharing what interests me. I say limited because I have yet to go viral – most hits for a single post is about 150 – I know some people who get thousands of hits but I’m just not willing to do posts about kittens & puppies 🙂

Breaking In Grief

he was wearing

his dead son’s sneakers

bought a month before

the son’s step off into oblivion

new shoes a sign of hope

of a future planned for

not of a life too soon to be ended


they found the sneakers

still in their box

in the cupboard

worn once to try them on

designer expensive

too nice to toss or donate

so he’s wearing them now

it gives me the creeps

practicality in the face of catastrophe


I visited home

the summer after my father died

his death was sudden

it was the body that gave out

he didn’t go out of his way

to find that oblivion

I go through his clothes

to help my sister winnow out

throw out donate

to share some memories

I end up keeping a a couple of jackets

that actually fit me

the shirt and pants

were easy to part with

most of the shoes too


my Dad was all business

when it came to shoes

his idea of comfort wear was

hard onyx red oxfords

there was box with a new onyx pair

only worn to try them on

they sort of fit me

very stuff and inflexible

never being broken in


I take them


I wear them a few times

then drop them in a clothing box

they don’t fit

right size but wrong shape

maybe that’s why my Dad never

wore them either

the life my Dad hoped I would fit into

was also the right size

but the wrong shape

I was unwilling to do the work

that would break me in

so it would be a comfortable fit


I meet my friend one day

he’s sporting wildly neon runners

these were his son’s

it’s been a year after the death

and his finally feels okay to wear them

to walk in grief

knowing he’ll never leave that grief behind

but ready

to walk forward with it


Chapbooks available:


kiss314257567_1162384753819933_3271661288579707843_oon going 🙂 when new podcast are posted:  Disability after Dark  iTunes

June 9-10: attending: Capturing Fire 2017 – flight & hotel booked already

check out these poets from  Capturing Fire 2015 & 2016

August 31-Sept.3 – I have my ticket already


November 1 – 30 Participating NaNoWriMo


Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee in Washington – sweet,eh?

Like my pictures? I post lots on Tumblr

Baycrest Brain Rental

Over the past couple of weeks I’ve participated an interesting brain/auditory/memory study at Baycrest, Rotman Research Institute. The official, & very catchy name of the project is: “Individual differences in working memory processing in young and older adults indicated by neuromagnetic oscillations” It was spread over three sessions and proved to be one of the more intriguing studies I’ve done.

It was one that called on more of my brain. Usually the ‘memory’ studies I do involve remembering lists of words, numbers, replicating images. This is one of few that also involved hearing. One portion involved recording my brain signals with a magnetoencephalograph (MEG) while I was doing the task. While doing the task I had ear buds that were playing a variety of tones, pitches & different loudness levels.

The other portion involved hearing tests and testing understanding of speech in noise. I was to repeat a phrase (a different one each time) said against background of people talking. Sometime I get to practice at poetry readings where people not interested in the performance see fit to talk as loud as they can to drown out the performer (this happens more often than you’d expect.)

Doing this studies is a way for me give something back via research. Even when I was doing the pharmaceutical research I was aware that my tiny participation could save lives. I also felt it was important that, even though this information isn’t germane to the study, there be gay males included in the pool. And sometimes the money was decent. I’ve had more MRI’s cat scans, eegs, & MEGs than the average person too.

The most challenging part of the study was getting to Baycrest in the morning 🙂 I general transit to Lawrence Station & walk the rest of the way. I know where the Starbucks are. For this study I opted to go one stop further to York Mills & walk from there along Wilson. Turns out this route is faster. I like the opportunity to see other parts of the city & sample Starbucks. Plus I’m always eager for photo ops. If you’re interesting be a part of such research gave Baycrest a call.

More North York pics:

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The Iron Rule


Started a new set of prompts – I love lists of things – this one will prove to be endlessly productive for another couple of years – 227 Rules For Monks. These are from the 30 nissaggiyas: 4 Not to have a robe washed or dyed by a bhikkhunī who is not a relative. (A bhikkhunī or bhikṣuṇī is a fully ordained female monastic in Buddhism.)

The Iron Rule

other than

shirts to the dry cleaners

no one has done my laundry

since I was old enough

to sort whites from coloureds

this I taught myself

one of those abilities

I never learned in school

or even at my mother’s side

I know how to sort

how to fold

but I’ve never figured out

how to iron

something my sisters learned

in home ec

all those things taught by gender

in my Cape Breton high-school days

typing and cooking for girls

hammering and cars for boys

but my sisters never ironed for me

they never cooked for me either

I figured out how to cook on my own

so I never based a relationship

on someone doing my cooking and laundry

like so many guys I know

I still have nightmares

about shop – manual training

where I did figure out how to use a hammer

a handsaw even a power drill

but the jig-saw

the rotary saw

filled me with dread

I couldn’t hold the wood down

out of that fear

of losing a finger

mocked by the shop teach

I couldn’t even bother

trying to clamp down the coffee table top

to get the C+ I needed to pass

I failed at being a man

one of the many failures

that piled on my queer shoulders

as I plodded my way through high-school

wishing I could learn to use a sewing machine

not a drill press

in fact all I learned in high school

was how to avoid confrontation

but ignoring the taunts

from other kids

from teachers

so I thank them

knowing how to do laundry

and blame them

for not knowing how to iron a shirt

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Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee in Washington – sweet,eh?

Restored to Banality

Restored to Banality

it was a piece of mine

about the awakening of my

queer sensibility

of being twelve years old

seeing the bared stomach of a classmate

& wanting to see more

I was taken to task

by a listener

for being insensitive

to those who had been sexually molested

at the age of twelve years

of being indifferent to the suffering

that has haunted them ever since

I was told

that I should know better

show a greater sensitivity

to men and women in my audience in future

this person also found

a piece in which expressed pleasure

in sucking cock & having mine sucked

to be a clear sign of sex addiction

& yes another example of my

insensitivity to those who have

been traumatized by past trauma

I did not point out redundancy

I did not apologize

as they clearly expected me to do

I’d rather be thought insensitive

that waste my time proving I’m not

I will not be silenced

your past pain does not

trump my experience

does not make yours more


more morally sound

I will not be silenced

I was silenced enough

in my past about being open & out

by ‘normal’ people

offended by sexuality

I’m not going to let happen

by ‘alternative’ people

offended by sex

I will not waste time

figuring out what trigger warning

I have to use

because I can’t predict what may offend

when it seems

my rather banal childhood

my fumbling discovery of gay sexuality

is offensive enough

This piece, inspired by the thumbscrew Law 33, arises from a real incident. One of things I set out to do decades ago when I started back into writing & performing poetry, was to treat the realization of one’s queer sexuality with a romantic sweetness. There is a whole genre of straight poetry about a lad’s first kiss, a girl’s first crush but I wasn’t reading much in queer poetry about those experiences. It was as if writing about it might come across pedophilia-ish.

So when queers write about early sex awareness it had to be angsty or, better yet, come from being abused and in dealing with abuse to have a deeper sense of their self. This wasn’t my experience & I wasn’t going to treat mine as not being authentic enough to be worth writing about.

I have a piece that starts ‘I have a new boyfriend/ he’s only fifteen … ’ I take a long grinning pause, then continue ‘year younger than me.’ Often in that pause there are gasps of dismay in the audience. The piece directly challenges judgements based on age.

This one challenges judgements based on sensitivity – whose emotional context is most deserving of respect & how responsible am I as a writer/performer for guessing what will trigger? I have sexual pieces I wouldn’t present in a high school session – but if I’m appearing at a lgbtq event how much self-censorship do I have to apply? It sometimes seems the expression of rage & anger at the oppressive culture we live in is the only acceptable road of self-expression.

I’ve discovered that many politically progressive, articulate, gender questioning people are using their perspectives to be sex-a-phobic. Considering how mundane my sex life life & how banal process of my  awareness of my sexuality is I am amused at how triggering that banality can be.



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Lazarus Kiss.20

Sis amplexibus Amor alios mututa memini et amoris in mutationes memini.

May you be embraced by a love beyond recall that alters others

and a love within recall that alters you.


“Oh, got secrets to tell the old man.” He followed Harris up the stairs with a  couple of cups of coffee. “Just like the old days.”

Harris sat as his desk and his Dad sat on the bed.

“Dad, why did you tell me about this curse business?”

“My Dad didn’t tell me till I‘d gotten married.”

“You married younger than I am now.” He licked frosting off his fingers.

“I was worried, afraid that your not knowing was getting the the way.”

“I can’t help feeling that no one sincerely likes me, that they are under a spell where they don’t have any choice. Some mornings I’ve been afraid to leave my apartment, not knowing when its going to happen.”

He told his Dad about the security footage, about Mamma Pazzoni trying to break into his apartment to break his neck for breaking her son’s heart.

“We can get a restraining order against that woman. One thing divorce lawyers learn to deal with is angry women.”

“That’s not the point Dad. I don’t want to have to deal with these types of consequences for things that aren’t my fault.”

“I know. I know. I went to a shrink for a few years, before I met your mother, to see if I could get to the roots of why I wasn’t connecting. When my father told me things fell into place but that understanding didn’t take away the fact that I had to deal with it.”

“But you didn’t have to fight it after you met mom, right. You said it stopped.”

“Pretty much. I had to work at it though. With what my father told me I was aware and was determined to act on that awareness. I learned to recognize the …. the on set of opportunity and to steer clear of it. When I consistently said ‘no,’ it happened less and less and finally stopped.”

“So you’re saying that even though I’m not responsible I am responsible.”

“Right.” he Dad laughed. “Have you told anyone?”
“Trevor Daniels. He doesn’t fully believe me. Or didn’t till I told him about that Frances and her deranged fiancee. I’m not sure he accepts it though. Who would.”

“You boys going to be up there all day?” His mother called up. “Your phone keeps ringing, Harris.”

“We’ll be right down.” His Dad finished off the last brownie. “Seems like years since we’ve had a father son talk. Feels good. Hope it helped.”

“I guess it did.”

Downstairs Harris checked his phone for messages. None. Missed calls were from an unknown number. He got his clothes out of the drier and dressed in his old room. There was a full sized poster of Cyclops on the back of the door. He could remember arguing with Timmy, one of the Mullins boys, about Cyclops’s abs – Tommy said they were part of the costume and Harris insisted they were part of Cyclops’s body. Reality was how one saw it, he supposed.

He went downstairs.

“Here’s brownies to take home with you, dear.” His mother put a container of them on the table by the front door. “Did you tell him, Tom?”
“I forgot. we got to talking about other things.”

“Tell me what?”
“Your cousin Michael is coming to town.” His Dad shrugged.

There was a look between his parents Harris didn’t understand.

“He’s staying here?”

“Oh, no. He’ll be at a big hotel. He’s a movie star, you know.” his mother explained.

“Now you’re telling me.”

“As you are aware I haven’t been much in touch with that sister of mine or her family.”


“He’s in those Mirror Mind movies.”

“What! I’ve seen the first two. The next one is coming out in the fall. I don’t remember any Michael Caldwell?”

“No. He acts as Marshall Caldwell. I read in the paper that the name was his mother’s idea. But I don’t know what part he plays. Clara sent the DVDs. I can’t be bothered with them. Do you want them?”


They were on the table beside the brownies. It was still pouring so he called for a taxi.

Marshall Travers. Harris wasn’t sure who was who in the movies. The series was about a bunch of what he considered, photogenic thumbs suffering to weepy music. Their reflected mirror selves and their physical selves were at war with one another. The reflected selves had powers like shape shifting and could dart into the real world while the physical selves remained human.

He was getting into the elevator at his condo when his phone rang.


“It’s Alex. I’ve been tryin’ to get ya all afternoon.”

“I told you I’d be at my parents.” he snapped.

“I forgot.”

Harris felt guilty now. He didn’t really know Alex but already felt he had endanger their relationship.

“I’m just getting home. Where are you?”

“Not t’far, I reckon. By Greendale station.”

“Come on over.”

“Cool. Where?”

Harris has assumed that like Mamma Pazzoni Alex knew where he lived.

“Plaza Place. Tower 2. Buzz 512. Suite 1802.”

Harris put the brownies in the fridge. Went to the bedroom and checked to see how fresh his sheets where. They were fine. The buzzer rang.

“That didn’t take long. Come on up.”

Would he have to explain Andy Humphun?


When Harris had said no to him dropping by the other day Alex almost tore the phone off the booth wall. He banged the receiver against the plastic wall as hard as he could. Didn’t this fat jerk-off get how hard it was for a guy like himself to make that kind of call. Didn’t he see how slimy he felt using pay phones to keep Linda from finding out.

He’d always found it hard enough to call women. Calling a man for a date to have it put off made him see red. A red that stuck with him through the rest of day. After that call he went directly to the KB Gym to workout. Punching and kicking the bag didn’t reduce his need for something more.

At Story he was restless and inattentive, even swore at one customer. The Story crowd was such a bunch of lame ass losers anyway. At least at McBrick there would be a fight every week or so. A dust-up a man like him could handle.

At Story he was lucky if a customer got frustrated looking for a contact lens they had dropped on the floor.

When he got home from work he didn’t want to do anything, talk to anyone. Linda was asleep when he slipped into the bed. When he felt her hand stray on to his stomach he rolled away.

“What’s the matter? Baby don’t want to play.”

He didn’t want to have anything to do with her.

“Tired. In the morning.”

“Ahh, needs encouragement.” She played with his balls.

“No.” he pushed her hand away.

She sat up. “You’re fucking someone else. I knew it. The last time you had been that hot for me was when you were getting it off that skank Debbie. Guilt sex.”

“Jezz Linda. Can’t a guy sleep.”

“Not this guy.” she bit him playful on the shoulder.

“Yes, this guy.” he pulled the sheet back over his shoulders. “Let’s just get some sleep for a change, okay.”

“Whatever.” she lay back down, her back to his.

When he woke shortly before noon she was gone. One less thing to deal with. It was pouring rain.

While his bagel toasted he checked the time. What time had  Harris said to call? Late afternoon? No harm in trying now. He punched the first numbers into his cell and stopped. No. Linda might see them. The bagel began to burn. He yanked it out of the toaster, singed his fingers. He swore, kicked a kitchen chair at the wall and punched one of the cupboard doors.

“Fuck fuck fuck.” What had this guy done to him. He couldn’t get him out his mind. Why?

He went on the computer to the gay porn he had bookmarked. The clip was about sixteen minutes long. If that was how long queer sex lasted he could probably manage that to get it out of his system. He watched it twice all the way through. The guys had such big cocks Alex wasn’t sure if they were real. If this is what Harris expected he hoped he wouldn’t be too disappointed. His cock wasn’t small by any means but it certainly wasn’t abnormally large like these peckers.

Fuck fuck fuck. Why was we worried about how another guy would judge his dick. If it was more than enough for Linda it should be more than enough for that fat-assed faggot.

He went to the gym and worked on the areas of his body he had missed the other day. Two days of this should drain away that energy but added to it.

He went to the pay phone there a couple of times to call Harris but there was no answer. What was the point of having a cellphone if the fucker never answered it?

The rain was worse when he left the gym. He didn’t want to go back to his place. He stopped for a coffee and sat glaring at the rain. He couldn’t sit still and walked aimless for awhile.

When he stopped at a pay phone by Greendale station and tried one more time he was soaked. Water was dripping through his pants into his shoes and socks.

“Hi!” Harris answered on the first ring.

“It’s Alex.” A wave of relief went through him. “I’ve been trying t’get ya all afternoon.”

“I told you I’d be at my parents.”

“I forgot.”

“I’m just getting home. Where are you?”

“Greendale station.” He’d better not put me off again.

“Come on over.”

“Cool. Where?”

“Plaza Place. Tower 2. Buzz 9512. Suite 1802.”

Alex repeated the numbers as he ran though the rain. Hell, if he forgot he’d use his cellphone. He didn’t give a fuck what Linda thought.

Shivering he pressed the buzz code in.

“That didn’t take long. Come on up.”

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