I see your pictures on social media
a part of me is envious
of your freedom
even though women many years before
either of us
had absolutely no freedom and only those
with enough money could consider taking
a woman as their lover
it is hard to imagine
each generation I suspect
forgets the sacrifices of the last
cannot envision a time when
it was illegal to love
my experience was never that awful
I had freedoms many women still do not possess
and I am grateful for that
but sometimes when I see your
youthful face and the grace with which you accept love
how natural and easy it feels
I recall how I began
hiding in dark bars, trying to fit in, failing
never one to play endless games of poker face
I didn’t fit in with my own kind then
but if I’d been you
born in the sun with your turquoise eyes like the Donovan song
I might have had on my arm
a whole host of dreams and not
dabbled in boys for a few futile and unhappy years or
felt I couldn’t have had children and let
my fear and my constraint decide for me
you are the age my daughter might be
and I would like to think I’d have
done all you have done had I been born
in a time of greater acceptance where
women who love women can grow their hair
and not have to cling to stereotypes or subterfuge
carrying knots of shame and confusion
like blankets never stretched out and slept on
I would have gotten a tattoo and maybe
been less shy and apologetic
I remember at 18 that’s all I seemed to do
sorry to my family for not having turned out straight
sorry to my friends for being the odd one out
sorry to the gays on the march who thought
with my dresses and my long tresses I was a weekend
if they only knew
what it took and what I sacrificed
maybe they understand now
but we’re all a little older and
you don’t recapture what you felt at 18
you remember it like a language
I spoke the language of trial and error
I suspect you speak the language of love
just a little freer
so forgive me if I envy you as you walk past me
hand in hand, laughing, the edges of your hair
hitting your waist
like a Summer tidal wave.
SMITTEN – This is What Love Looks Like – Poetry by women for women – an anthology of poetry published by Indie Blu(e) will be out OCTOBER 2019 and available through all good book sellers. Please consider following SMITTEN’s FB page at https://www.facebook.com/SMITTENwomen/
If you are interested in supporting this project in any way please contact me @ firstname.lastname@example.org. All LGBTQ projects are a little more challenging to succeed and we want the 120_+ poets who have work in SMITTEN to be read by many! Indie Blu(e) and their submissions rules can be found at www.indieblu.net
24 thoughts on “What kind of lesbian would I be if I were born today?”
Love this… how much the world has changed, and still so far to go !
How many generations are needed
To get from servitude and invisibility
To something that looks like real freedom
To just be out loud, to become, perhaps,
Unremarkable in the pubic square
Just another couple in love?
And, still conscious of all that was
Shed along the way, all the tears
All the blood, all the stereotypes,
All the family ties, all the armor,
And all who went before.
Is the freedom finally won,
Or, as a wise man said, is
Eternal vigilance still its price?
Reblogged this on cabbagesandkings524 and commented:
TheFeatheredSleep – To young lesbians – also, Smitten
Beautiful and kinda tragic, but one thing is certain you would the same beautiful person you are now, I’ll be looking out for Smitten in October and this was definitely worth a reblog x
Yes! I am excited!
I am sure the Anthology as a whole is stellar. I know it is. Thank you!
Right back at ya, Beauty! 🙂
We shall move on and be loving and giving …
Thank you for creating this truly gorgeous anthology. Makes a difference in being heard. Brava!
Your work in SMITTEN is outstanding!!!
Thank you for helping me.
Big hugs Susi Q
You are literally one of my utmost favorite people on this Earth.
This produced a brilliant response from you!!!!!
If all people were as good as you my friend. Well.
Thank YOU. Without you in it, it would have missed something very important.
Far to go like Thursdays child.
Thank you. I’ve had good teachers.
Thanks. Brilliance begets brilliance.
Okay, maybe I won’t Reblog it doesn’t seem to work? But hey I’ll give you a good review on Goodreads 😘
You brave woman.
This changed my perspective a lot. We all struggle for freedom in different areas, but I never realised the depth of that struggle until I read this. It’s direct and to the point unlike so many of your other poems full of gorgeous imagery, but it made me think and feel. You’re a great writer.
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