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Poetry chapbook, the space between, available now at Modern Times Bookstore http://www.mtbs.com or online at http://www.finishinglinepress.com.
Thanks for your presence and efforts for the No on Prop 8 rally yesterday, Saturday, November 15, at Oakland City Hall. The crowd, speakers and collective energy for change were inspiring! Some of you asked for me to send you the poem I shared. Here it is, in its latest cut – for you to comment or send to your contacts. Maraming Salamat Po (Thank you)! – In peace, poetry and power – Aimee

Dangerous? : To Those Who Pushed Prop 8

Does it make you uneasy?

When I walk hand in hand with a woman
ignore anonymous men
at the club and choose
not to bow to their objectifying gaze

Does my long hair, feminine shape and tendency
to wear big earrings make you assume I’m hetero
in an attempt to keep all things in the world ‘straight’

my queerness makes you uneasy but
you have gone too far –

Saying that the option to wed to a person of my choosing
is a threat to society

Oh we’re so threatening
being happy and in love
deciding where to go on the weekends
cooking dinner or having take out
meeting the parents
watching movies on the couch
taking walks by the lake
or attending family functions

Oh we’re so dangerous
going grocery shopping
brushing our teeth
folding our laundry
washing the dishes
getting up to work in the morning
teaching, healing
cleaning, entertaining
running things
saving lives and
going to sleep at night
snoring, tired after the long workday just like you
having dreams and nightmares
just like you

We must be so threatening
driving and
giving and
caring we might be
showing everyone that we exist if
the law were to protect us just like you
I guess then it does have to do with education
but not in schools

We don’t even try to bother you
the way you bother us
toting “Yes on 8” and “protect marriage” signs
on my streets, making friends feel
unsafe at the voting polls
advertising your judgment visibly like a hate sign
pushing us and our allies to
protest on the streets
hold night time vigils
mass forward petitions
write blogs and even spit
spoken word poems
this could have been a song of celebration not
another angry queer woman poem but
it seems I need to remind you…

It wasn’t so long ago: til 1967
anti-miscegenation laws said whites could not marry
Blacks, Asians and Native Americans
and the violation of such was a felony
would you have left those laws in place
tearing apart lovers and
deeming it illegal
to make sacred a union
which at that time broke norms and expectations
maybe shocked the majority but we knew
that miscegenation was a form of segregation and
segregation was a form of oppression
celebrated on these shores –
this supposed land of the free

I say this sounds a little too much like
justified discrimination
glorified homophobia
and you want it written into the Constitution?
You say kids would have to learn about gay marriage
if Prop 8 were defeated.
even if that were true
do you prefer that children to be taught
it’s acceptable to exclude
it’s moral to deny rights
and equality is not real?

If you’re so afraid then please
take a look at your own
definition of love –
mine does not contain an inch of hatred
mine does not condemn another not even you
mine is not just about tolerance but compassion

and we don’t even try to bother you
the way you bother us but
we will keep fighting this
we will bother you now
bother you with a message that love
can never be limited
not by a law and
not by your hateful rhetoric
not by 4 percent
and not by all your church money
we will bother you with the truth, self-evident, that
no matter what
no matter what
love can never be boxed,
beaten down or banned –

Is that so dangerous?

– by Aimee Suzara
(c) 2008. Please circulate with permission from author only.