Boston Pride 2016, Continued

So tonight I went with some friends to the vigil for Orlando held in the plaza in front of Boston City Hall, and prayed and held silence and signed the book for our brothers and sisters in Orlando, to let them know we care. I still need to process all that, and I will write about it soon, but for now, a look back to Saturday and what I spent the time doing when I wasn’t either watching the parade or dancing my ass off.

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Needle. Haystack. Backbeat.

 

One

A sea of exhausted queers, underdressed, rained on,

Milling jubilantly across the plaza. Three flags:

Stars and Stripes, Massachusetts Indian, Rainbow.

Sixty-nine reasons to salute. Save the environment.

Adopt a shelter dog. Get tested. Buy a t-shirt.

Help veterans stop our warring. Eat fried dough.

There on the steps, a woman break-dances to music

Coming from the stage, to the applause of her friends

And strangers. One onlooker, all in black leather,

Turns away. We text and call you, give up,

Then turn around, and there you are at last.

 

Two

Parking lot block party between tall brick

Buildings echoing the DJ’s words, the backbeat

So deep my bones reverberate. Broken tarmac

And puddles of Bud Lite Lime make a rough

Dance floor, but I’ve lost my friends. I looked

Away for a moment and once again I was

Alone amid a few hundred tightly packed

Tattooed women’s bodies gyrating. Buzz cut

Blue hair bump and grind. Surely salmon swimming

Upriver move to no such background music,

Though the press of bodies must be something

Like this. How then to find four particular

Fish in the struggling river? Wandering the edges

Will not suffice. Only leaping into center stream,

Zenlike, gets it done. I abandon my goal,

My isolation, and finally find what I seek.

 

Three

Black light disco ball and all the young men

Packed wall to wall and taller than all

My lost friends: I am tired of losing them.

Even more than the vibrating drums and lights

Is the slight pall of sticky spilled drinks

On the floor. All these men so intent on

Scoring block my view as the lights

Scramble my attention. Trying to make out

Lyrics, like making out faces, is too much

Of a chore. Some searches are just doomed

From the start. At least I can still find the door.

 

Photo by Paula M. Grez.

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