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The first time I wanted to have this conversation,
I was eight, listening to Father Finn
Rail against what was happening then
In 1959 to our Country and I had been watching
My sister and her friends sneak down the isle
Kleenex bobby pinned to their hair and how mad
My mother was that they did not wear their hats
And the Father went on in the background
Until suddenly I heard the phrase 'sex change'
And he was talking about how shameful that was.
I wanted then to tug at my father and ask
What is wrong with Christine Jorgensen;
Why was she so wrong to want to be a woman?
But I knew the script already:
Be constructive; these things go away.
So the conversation was put aside,
Until Rhonda took my bearded face
In her large hands,
Looked me in the eye and asked the question,
What brings you here?
And everything around this moment whorled
Pieces of feeling snapping into place
So I could start this conversation
And come out into world
As the fireworks crackled all around.
Copyright 2006 © Paul Decelles