I moved to Toronto in May of 1978. Not only did I get suddenly sober but I got suddenly caught up in the start of something big: Gay Days http://onthebookshelves.com/gaydays.htm – which after a hiatus resurfaced as Gay Pride. I wish I still had my tank top – balloons, I think – the rainbow flag had yet to be created, invented or perhaps popularized. All the other elements where there though.
Community booths, commercial booths, parades, political conflicts between the in, the out, the out-too far, drag queens, butch dykes & guys who just wanted to get laid by Mr. Right (or Right-Now, whom ever showed up first). I must have already met a couple of queer poets because we claimed a section of Queen’s Park as the Poet Tree & declaimed our poetry to amused, disinterested or merely puzzled passers-by. Who those poets were I don’t recall. That was the summer I didn’t really journal – much too busy experiencing.
I remembering putting up posters, crushing on the guy I was helping but he had his sights on younger fry – in fact most of the guys I took an interest in were not looking for what I had to offer. Their eyes were set on one of three types: younger, butcher or hung. By butch I mean dark, hairy & muscular. I was, am, a natural blond.
The fact that I wasn’t drinking or toking up with them added another layer of distance. On top of which I was a poet – guess what – those factors still create layers of distance, now with age added into the picture.
The event was energizing, eye-opening & discouraging. Even then it was more important to me to be sober me than try to fit in as drunken me. I’ve never been one to compete for attention & at Pride that becomes par for the course. No one gets attention for more than 30 seconds (if that long). Perhaps now that 30 has been reduced to 15.
Pride has grown, flourished over the decades but I’ve been felt I was not the target demographic – too many beer gardens. I’ve performed at Pride a few times over the years at various stages set aside for spoken word – at one we had the biggest following but the set was cut short because the organizers didn’t like spoken word – when we left so did the bulk of the audience. Fuck heads.
I also refused to perform for free – who did I think I was? – I may not be a straight ally, with a new Broadway show or cd coming out, but if $ can be found for them, Pride can find $100 each bucks for us local queers – oops, I forgot I’m not the target audience & I’m not designed for that target audience either.I’m gratified that Pride has continued to grow, that is has become more mainstream, that our $ had bought respect – too bad it hasn’t prevented gay teens from being bullied to death – or kept comrades from being mowed down in nightclubs.
Hard To Get
I’m not playing hard to get
but you have to be hard
if you expect to get me
so I’m glad you like my profile
that you think my pics are hot
but ‘like’ isn’t enough
saying you want more
means nothing until you
do something to get me
I’ll open the door to opportunity
once or twice
if you make excuses
if you present conditional circumstances
it isn’t going to happen
that door will close
yeah I know I’m not all that
but that doesn’t mean
I’ll put up with postponement
that I’ll be grateful
for any attention I may get
I don’t want attention
I want action
so I’m glad you like my profile
it got your attention
you contacted me
the door is opened
on going 🙂 when new podcast are posted: Deliciously iTunes
November 1 – 30 Participating NaNoWriMo
June 2-4: attending: Capturing Fire 2017 –
check out these poets from Capturing Fire 2015: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCx5KD1eDccdjdTdQ28kZRNg
Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee in Washington – sweet,eh? paypal.me/TOpoet
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