After receiving an invite to a baby shower
for my rather new friends, Alanna and Jan,
I thought to myself: Man,
it’s so nice to have lived
to see a new day
when human beings who are lesbian or gay
can more and more
feel that they
don’t have to tuck themselves away
uncomfortably in shadows of dark places
where no one should ever have to reside,
let alone stay –
What I’m getting at is, hey, the “closet” back in my day
was as crowded as Yankee Stadium
on opening day.
Now, it wasn’t as though
they went unnoticed in some way
but other than some hetero bad mouthing homos
about some boy running like a girl
or warning “You better watch that woman
with the GI Joe crew cut over there
checking out your girl”
they just weren’t a topic of concern
like they are today.
I mean back then if somebody made reference
someone would probably have asked them
“What the hell is wrong with you?
Don’t you know your abc’s?
“Is that a line of letters on one of those eye charts
that tests your visual acuity?”
But over time folks began to come out of the closets
to the light of day
and that started gaining attention
in a not so subtle way…
No, society couldn’t handle that
without something loud and ugly to say,
seemingly okay with
gay students or those perceived to be gay
being teased and bullied
at their schools everyday;
with popular radio and TV talking heads
making derisive remarks and stirring up
sentiments that have been ridiculously anti-gay;
with the barring of gays from august national institutions like the BSA.
And HIV slash AIDS coming into play
sure didn’t help in any way.
So it seemed to me there would never be,
in my lifetime, acceptance of LGBTQ folks in any significant way
but then, in a moment in time, it seemed, I looked away
and when I checked back in
men were marrying men
and women were marrying women,
and along with this trend,
“Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” came to an abrupt end.
And now, some beautiful people I know,
from a while ago,
who used to be just Cathy and Anna,
are “two moms,”
mothers to Oliver, a real cutie, the bomb,
and now, my new friends,
Jan and Alanna, are “two moms” to be,
with a baby due in February.
Oh, this has been something wonderful to see,
especially in light of all the silly talk about marriage sanctity
and lousy rap like rhymes about how “God made Adam and Eve
not Adam and Steve”
and quotes from Leviticus
on how a man should not lie with a man
and a woman should not wear the clothes of a man
because such acts are an abomination.
A bunch of “Blah-blah-blah” to beat the band.
And Jesus ain’t said a damn
thing to Christians
that might apply to this conversation
other than “Thou shalt love thy neighbor
Need he say anything else?
Love is the answer
to the making of a better world
above all else.
And nobody I’ve ever met
is more loving
than these sets of two moms.
A world changer is what each one of them
happens to be.
I met Cathy
via a piece in the Arizona Alumnus Magazine,
that highlighted her work
in the school’s gay community.
I emailed her a note
as to what it meant to me
to have her at my alma mater
promoting respect for all of humanity
and she replied
by asking me if I would be
the keynote speaker
for the first ever UA Celebration
of LGBTQ and Allied Graduates
and I must have answered
with every word for “Yes” known to me.
I would have walked across the desert
to participate in such a ceremony.
But, whew, they had enough do-re-mi
to fly me.
That would have been very tiring, you see,
but that was one of my first big hints
that gays and lesbians
were being taken seriously
or that I was being taken seriously
or the universe was messing with me –
perhaps, all three, makes no difference to me.
Then I met, Anna, her other half,
who has made the world a better place
in so many ways:
working in a bookstore,
waitressing until her feet were sore,
taking census of,
and organizing communities
and so much more…
Then along came Jan,
who I dug at first sight
because she was introduced to me
by a woman I love with all my might,
a woman who supervised her in a
counseling masters program
at San Diego State University,
and Jan left that dynamic program
with a degree
and the kind of sensitivity necessary
to operate effectively
with clients in a diverse society
and she’s gone about such work admirably,
especially with LGBT
students at UCSD.
Now she’s pursuing a doctorate
in clinical psychology,
forever seeking the wherewithal
to make sure that all
among us are tended to.
And her wife, Alanna,
the carrier of their child,
is a giver, a lover, a helper, too,
a librarian who
guides students through issues
around ethnicity and gender,
and diverse living styles,
preparing them to relate to
and confront the social demands we all face in a new century,
realizing that human beings
are better served
when their minds are open
to fresher ways of thinking,
to deeper ways of reflecting,
to higher planes of being.
In that regard these pairings of two moms
will play a role with all the other two moms
of the world in relegating the notion
that only a father and a mother
offer the ideal atmosphere under which
a child can be raised
into the category of antiquated ways
of looking at ourselves,
giving us hope that we can become,
as a people, more than we ever allowed
ourselves to think we could become.
I mean after all, in their situations,
there were no unintended pregnancies
as they sought and got what they wanted
and what they wanted was a family.
Any child of theirs will be as lucky as lucky can be.
And it won’t matter if their son
runs like a girl
or if their daughter
wears a GI Joe crew cut
and likes the girls –
because by that time
closets will be wide open,
in a vastly more understanding
and loving world,
a two moms kind of world.
*Community Based Block,
for those who,
wondering what the heck CBB is,
had a mental block.