Wednesday, 28 May 2008

Mirror Images

The way I see things is changing. An easy example: the first time I watched a k.d. lang video I was electrified and terrified. Now I’m just happy, and she looks like an individual, not a vision of what I was scared to become.

My sense of visible gender is shifting. I don’t confidently categorize the people I see: male, female. I get it ‘wrong’ a lot of the time, actually.

But far more visible to me are the men, the soft, gentle, feminine men. The speaker at today’s seminar had elegant hands and bashful eyes; perched on the table, his torso swayed gently as he answered questions. He moved the way I was supposed to. While in the audience, I sat, doubtless, the way he had been taught to, but never quite learned. Then on the bus ride home I noticed a teenager, his blonde hair floppy, large earrings in both ears. I feel a tenderness for them, and a sense of connection, too, as if we’ve bumped up back to back on some great gender/body circle. T. told me recently one such man (I don’t know the right terminology, what a feminine gay guy would call himself...) passed us on the street and looked at me with a similar tenderness. Do you know what I’m talking about here?

that first k.d. lang video:

8 comments:

ladybrettashley said...

such a lovely song. and singer - i've been listening to her all day because i finally got "shadowland" on cd...the tape hasn't been much use without a player.

terminology - all i've heard, as far as self-labeling by feminine gay men is "queen," but that is definitely a tough sort of femininity, not the gentle sort you are speaking of. it makes me wonder, though, why gay men (the ones i know at least) use butch but not femme as descriptors or labels for people. perhaps it is because butch is, linguistically, genderless, but femme obviously references female.

letsdance said...

Love is Love is Love.....

When I am in a good space (happy, relaxed), I feel love for every body and every thing.

My name is Lina said...

I was also mesmorised when I first saw her. But then, I though she and I would get married, and created a shrine in my teenage bedroom for her. . .

The first time I went to see her live I threw up afterwards for half an hour...

It was love. I thought... :)

Leo MacCool said...

Lady Brett, you're right, I've heard butch but not femme used as an adjective for gay men. Yeah, 'queen' isn't quite what I'm thinking of. I sort of think of 'fairy' but that might be really offensive (though I don't mean it that way, at all, in my head).

letsdance, yeah, that's a happy space to be in.

My Name is Lina: that's completely adorable! Oh, k.d., such a heartbreaker. ;)

femmecolleen said...

I've heard "queen" for the feminine gay men...and also "fairy." I think you're right, that "fairy" borders on offensive, depending on who you're talking to (or about). It's a good question...I wonder sometimes if the gay male community spends as much time dissecting the genders of its community as much as we dykes do?

Femmeflame said...

I have been gratefully reading your blog and freedomgirl's blogs since yesterday. Thank you both for sharing your process.
In my own life, I was shocked to randomly decide to play this video and realize that it was the song reference to a thank you sent to me by a butch. Coincidences. phew.

Leo MacCool said...

thanks, femmeflame. i think it's kind of a butch/femme anthem, at least the way she sings it, if there could be such a thing.

Femmeflame said...

Leo,
I want to let you know I have been talking about your blog and freedomgirl's blog alot-alot-alot.

Expect some hits.

Warm regards for your honesty,

Flame