Long Lost

A Cambridge University student, while doing research on the British poet Siegfried Sassoon, has found buried treasure. A poem penned to Sassoon’s boyfriend, Glen Byam Shaw.

Written in 1925, when homosexuality was still a crime in the U.K., perhaps the omission of pronouns is more than a matter of poetic style.

Not a blast from the past, but a sigh…

Untitled poem
Though you have left me, I’m not yet alone:
For what you were befriends the firelit room;
And what you said remains & is my own
To make a living gladness of my gloom
The firelight leaps & shows your empty chair
And all our harmonies of speech are stilled:
But you are with me in the voiceless air
My hands are empty, but my heart is filled.
Copyright Siegfried Sassoon by kind permission of the Estate of George Sassoon

Aimer at Amazon

Pride

As Toronto gears up for the Pride parade this weekend, I’ve been hearing a lot about a group who feel left out, overlooked. Apparently, these people have been victimized by those of us who strive for an inclusive society with equality for all.

They’re asking for their own parade, calling it STRAIGHT PRIDE. How they can even say the words with a straight face is beyond me!

Not that I’m surprised, we’ve heard this kind of garbage before, white men complaining about how rough they have it because minorities and women are getting all the good jobs. Please! Pass the hat, let’s help these poor souls out.

There are a lot of comments out there on the request for a Straight Pride parade in Boston. Here’s one of my favourites:

Will a Straight Pride parade ever happen? I’m thinking not, but the fact that some people think it should… There are still a few holdouts who believe the earth is flat, doesn’t make them right.

Aimer at Amazon

A Lifetime

Is it the same?

After all this time, are we the same?

I don’t know. How would I know? How can I compare who we are now with who we were then…?

The years rolled on, shit happened. Evasions. Lies. Large and small hurts delivered in anger and in silence.

Shared memories and secret smiles. Mornings rushing around or sleeping in. Frenzied days and wild nights. Laughter … I don’t have to try to remember the laughter because we laugh still you and I.

I wasn’t looking to get married all those years ago, not that we could back then. I was looking to get laid and so were you…

And here we are, forty years on. Thinning hair, and rounding shoulders, and still looking to each other—to get laid.

Blackbird

As a species we’ve done our best to wipe each other out, wrecked whole continents of people because they weren’t like us. Didn’t look the same, didn’t think the same, didn’t speak our language.

And yet, despite our millennia of ignorance and arrogance and greed, we haven’t managed to destroy everything…not quite everything. Not yet.

Thanks to people like Katani Julian, a Mi’kmaq language teacher from Nova Scotia, indigenous languages live on.

In celebration of the UN’s International Year of Indigenous Languages, Julian took on the task of translating Paul McCartney’s Blackbird into Mi’kmaq feeling that lyrics like Take these broken wings, and learn to fly resonate with the indigenous experience in Canada. “It’s the type of gentle advice we get from our elders when we feel defeated, when we feel down.”

In the hope that we can learn to not break any more wings, here is Emma Stevens of Eskasoni, Nova Scotia singing Blackbird…

Because It’s Right

Life has gotten complicated. With new options come new questions… and new answers.

My daughter has two children, they both call her Daddy — because my daughter’s wife is Mommy.

Takes a bit of getting used to, doesn’t it?

From multi-generational, to nuclear, to blended, the concept of family continuously evolves, as we evolve.

Oftentimes, the law is slow to adapt to these changes, but in California this week they got it right.

Aidan Dvash-Banks, born in Canada to American and Israeli fathers, (Andrew and Elad Dvash-Banks) had been granted U.S. citizenship. His twin brother, Ethan Dvash-Banks had not.

At first glance, this doesn’t seem blatantly discriminatory, or it doesn’t if you don’t know much about citizenship law which I don’t. It seems logical that the biological son of the American gets citizenship status and the biological son of the Israeli doesn’t…

Yeah, no.

If Andrew had married a woman both boys would have been granted citizenship. The government failed to recognize the Dvash-Banks marriage as legitimate. They applied a born out of wedlock policy to the twin boys.

Fortunately, District Judge John F. Walter explained to the U. S. government where they had gone wrong.

Both boys have now been granted citizenship and the family is healthy, and happy, and living in L.A.

Boys

Family is about heart, some people know that 🙂

Aimer at Amazon

Gender Identity: Fake News?

Some members of the Ontario P.C. party think gender identity is an unscientific, Liberal ideology — in other words, fake news. They want the theory removed from the Ontario school curriculum.  To that end, the party has voted to debate the issue of Gender Identity at their next convention in 2019.

Seriously?

Are they going to debate the theory that the earth is round? That gravity exists?

Could someone please inform the Conservative Party members that we are more than what lies between our legs?

Can we focus on the person, not the sex?

Can we let people be who they are, the person inside their bodies?

A binary world is for code and computers, not people. Real life, despite what the social conservatives would have us believe, is a little more complex than that. And a lot more interesting.

Proof positive? Exhibit A: Ezra Miller’s Playboy shoot.

The defense rests.

Aimer at Amazon

None So Blind

I love it here in Canada, wouldn’t want to live anywhere else.

Yes, the winter is crap unless you’re one of those coordinated types who like to slalom down mountains or fly over the ice, but hey — central heating 🙂

I like that we’ve had same-sex marriage for 13 years, medically assisted dying (euthanasia) since 2016, and have now legalized recreational marijuana.

I’m incredibly grateful that I live here — but then, I’m not one of the First Peoples.

We have consistently and systematically mistreated and abused the First Peoples of this country for most of our 151 year history.

Out of all the wrong we have done, to my mind, the worst has been stealing their children and forcing them into Residential Schools. We forced these children to abandon their culture and heritage, forbade them to speak their own language or practice their own religion, abused them physically and sexually. We did this for more than a hundred years.

But we know better now, right? We don’t still believe one race, or religion, or culture is magically right and all the others are wrong.

We do know better, but racism is alive and well in this country for many minorities and for First Peoples especially. Ask Katrina Anderson of St. Albert, Alberta, Canada. Her daughter, Candace came home from school and found a letter in their condo mailbox telling her family to go back to the reservation where they belong.

first peoples 2

None so deaf as those who will not hear.
None so blind as those who will not see.
Matthew Henry

Aimer at Amazon