Art

A Plebiscite to Call Home

August 11, 2017
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By Claudia Van Zellar

Art by Shona Wong 

I will not bristle at the thought of strangers

validating my relationship via snail mail

these are not love letters.

 

I will not be compelled to respond to comments

from men in mail order relationships

though they fail to notice or consider

how not so long ago

their ‘lifestyles’ would have received a similar response

to the unwelcome tripe which they slather

on virtual walls.

 

I will not buy into arguments about children needing to be raised by hetero parents

when I was happily raised by one mother,

two grandparents,

one brother,

and a village.

 

I will not cave to the ignorance of others

nor seek to justify why I happen to find compatibility with a human, not a gender

that my soul was open enough to welcome other possibilities

that I am not held to a binary standard simply due to my choice of mate

for all facets of the love spectrum are visible

and deserve to be seen for their essences

without shame or stigma.

 

This is a matter

that is not up for discussion

it does not belong on your agenda

and I am certainly not keeping it on mine.

 

But I am silently keeping minutes

waiting, counting.

 

I will not anticipate anything

if I can help it.

 

I look ahead, but I don’t look forward to this

the alienation

the inevitability of coming out

every time someone assumes my partner’s pronoun

based on my appearance

the dread and vulnerability

of being at the mercy

of other people’s creeds and beliefs

upon revealing myself.

 

And I will not call this feeling home

for in my own universe

it is immaterial

we all become stateless ashes in the end

while our souls find homes

beyond flesh or gender

beyond perceptions of social worth.

 

My love is love

it is raw and sometimes dangerous

like this sunburnt, lucky country

I still call home

 

I sure love this great,

bumbling,

divisive

and exasperating

Southern Land

it is the daggy Dad I never really had.

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