Where I come from, some gay men are married to women and they come out at night like vampires thirsty for semen and male caresses. At daybreak they stand at podiums and denounce homosexuality as an inhuman disease. I was a victim of those vampires once. I made it out somewhat unscathed. I am forever grateful for this. In the same breath, I mourn those who never quite made it out. They still roam the streets of my youth like hearses driving around with live people in coffins, too scared to scream in case they freak out pall bearers that expect them to be inanimate corpses. The trouble is, once at the graveyard, there’s no clawing out from under the dirt. At least if you call out from the coffin you’ll freak people out and still have room to run into the streets and haunt the gatekeepers of love and masculinity. You still have a chance to haunt them into truth. And slap them out of the stupor of denial. You’re not dead, damnit! You’re teeming with life and new beginnings! The coffin isn’t your life. Break through and haunt the fuck out of these streets. You belong everywhere but the graveyard. Breathe with me.
Frank Malaba 2018