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Disappointment

For a while I was writing nearly every day in a LiveJournal community called all_unwritten. Eventually they opened a new community called all_rewritten. This is a piece I wrote in November 2008, after California failed to pass an initiative to allow gay marriage. Thought it was appropriate for today.

This piece is just about one of the male couples in my head, and they were reminiscing over their "marriage" (which was just one asking the other to be his lifelong mate, there was no legal marriage). I've now expanded it to include my disappointment over the ban on gay marriages in California.



He could see it, right there in his mind's eye, the carpet of leaves on the trail at Bernheim Forest. If he sat really still, he could feel Brian's hand in his, could see his steamy breath in the early morning air. Even with his eyes closed he could feel the bright light of the sun that morning as they'd walked along the path.

Sean was good at visualizing things, at feeling things that weren't really there. He was good at it because many times it was all he had.

Brian hadn't complained that morning, had rolled out of bed readily, eagerly, had held his hand on the drive over, and had risen up on tiptoes to kiss his forehead before they started the walk. When they'd reached the summit, Sean had scooped up a handful of the leaves and presented them sloppily to Brian.

"I know kiddo, that a messy pile of leaves and my feeble promises aren't quite the same as a church and a preacher giving us his blessing, but I love you, I cherish you, and I honor you always."

"Hush Sean," Brian said, he raised a finger to caress over Sean's lips. "You know that I wouldn't have it any other way. The promise we made to each other a year ago today, with your leaves and burning eyes, it's buried deep in my heart. I don't need any of that other stuff, I need you."


Sean stirred, opened his eyes. Three years removed from that day, and the connection between them was still strong. His phone buzzed on the arm of the chair, and he knew that Brian had felt his questing thoughts.

"Hey babe," Sean said.

"You're like an alarm clock Sean," Brian said, his voice garbled across the long distance. "We just set down, and now we're loading into a bus. God knows where we're off to first."

"You wouldn't want me any other way kiddo, and you know it," Sean said. He paused, and hoped the connection would hold long enough to unburden his heart. "It didn't pass."

"What?" Brian's voice was loud for a moment, and then soft as he continued. "That proposition…in California?"

"That one," Sean said. "The big plans for a real wedding on the fifth anniversary of our cheesy one, they ain't coming true. Not now."

"Fuck." There was a pause filled with the snaps and crackles of an overseas connection, and then Brian said, "It doesn't change anything Sean. It's a whole year away, anything could happen in that time. I'm still melted inside that you said you wanted to make this official, but like I said, it is official in my heart. You're my man Sean, some piece of paper isn't going to change that."

"Have I ever told you how much I love you Brian?" Sean said, his smile extending to his voice.

"You have," Brian said, the connection breaking up again, "But you can tell me again."

"I love you right up to the moon, and back."

"Wow, that's a lot."

A kiss to the receiver was not the same as a real kiss, but it would have to suffice. Brian wasn't due back in the States for another two weeks. During that time Sean knew he'd bury his disappointment, and throw himself back into his work, bide the time until Brian was back.

The call ended with Brian promising to call back once he got to his hotel for the night, even if he woke Sean up. And Sean promised to wait up, even though he knew he'd fall asleep waiting.

His disappointment over not being able to marry Brian for real would fade, but the resentment he felt that he didn't even have a choice would burn brightly for quite some time.

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
(Anonymous)
Nov. 4th, 2009 05:28 pm (UTC)
Absolutely-bittersweetly-beautiful!
Thank you for reposting this story! I hadn't read it before - it was brilliant!

I too, am fustrated with the system.

However, when I look back, I see the strides that we have made for gay marriage (I mean, come on! When we were in highschool, did you really think there would ever be a serious discussion on a national level regarding gay marriage?)

So it is with a bittersweetness that I say, there is always the promise of tomorrow. I won't give up hope.

I just feel fustrated and a bit helpless today.
(Deleted comment)
rowenasudbury
Nov. 4th, 2009 06:10 pm (UTC)
Re: Absolutely-bittersweetly-beautiful!
Ack....so sorry to hear about the migraine...rest up and get better soon!

Thanks for the comment, and of course you're so right. Back when *I* was in high school no one even talked about homosexuality, much less in terms of marriage.

I do get very angry, and annoyed to think that basic human rights like this are taken away in the name of "God". I'm a Christian, and *my* God doesn't act like that.

Anyway...took my frustration out in the form of a story. Not the first time and definitely won't be the last time.
taylor_lochland
Nov. 4th, 2009 05:48 pm (UTC)
Thanks for posting that, Rowena. Excellent...and very time-appropriate.
rowenasudbury
Nov. 4th, 2009 06:11 pm (UTC)
Thanks for reading and thanks for the comment :)
takarajewels
Nov. 4th, 2009 06:10 pm (UTC)
Found this on twitter.
Really moving and emotional story. I don't know what else to say but that I too am sorely upset about the result in Maine ... :(

Maybe one day, their wish could become reality... hehe.
We just need to keep believing and fighting.
rowenasudbury
Nov. 4th, 2009 06:13 pm (UTC)
Thank you for reading, and thanks for commenting!

Last year when the vote happened in California I was sick over it. I feel the pain of all those in Maine who supported Gay Marriage. One feels helpless, and so angry.

But I guess it's true what they say, we can never give up the fight, never roll over and let someone else take our rights away.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )