pat parker

For The Straight Folks Who Don’t Mind Gays But Wish They Weren’t So Blatant
by © Pat Parker (1944 - 1989)

You know, some people got a lot of nerve.
Sometimes I don’t believe the things I see and hear.

Have you met the woman who’s shocked by two women kissing and in the same breath, tells you she is pregnant?
BUT gays, shouldn’t be so blatant.

Or this straight couple sits next to you in a movie and
you can’t hear the dialogue because of the sound effects.
BUT gays shouldn’t be so blatant.

And the woman in your office spends an entire lunch hour talking about her new bikini drawers and how much her husband likes them.
BUT gays shouldn’t be so blatant.

Or the “hip” chick in your class rattling like a mile a minute while you’re trying to get stoned in the john, about the camping trip she took with her musician boyfriend.
BUT gays shouldn’t be so blatant.

You go in a public bathroom and all over the walls there’s John loves Mary, Janice digs Richard, Pepe loves Delores, etc.,
BUT gays shouldn’t be so blatant.

Or you go to an amusement park and there’s a tunnel of love and pictures of straights painted on the front and grinning couples are coming in and out.
BUT gays shouldn’t be so blatant.

Fact is, blatant heterosexuals are all over the place.
Supermarkets, movies, on your job, in church, in books, on television every day day and night, every place-even- in gay bars and they want gay men and woman to go and hide in the closet.

So to you straight folks I say, “Sure, I’ll go if you go too”
BUT I’m polite so, after you.

If it were possible
to place you in my brain
to let you roam around
in and out
my thought waves
you would never
have to ask
why do you love me?


This morning as you slept
I wanted to kiss you awake
say I love you till your brain
smiled and nodded yes
this woman does love me.


Each day the list grows
filled with the things that are you
things that make my heart jump
yet words would sound strange
become corny in utterance.


In the morning when I wake
I don’t look out my window
to see if the sun is shining.
I turn to you instead.

—  Sunshine by Pat Parker
for the straight folks who don’t mind gays but wish they weren’t so blatant

a poem by pat parker, 1977

you know, some people got a lot of nerve.
sometimes i don’t believe the things i see and hear.

have you met the woman who’s shocked by two women kissing
and in the same breath, tells you she is pregnant?
BUT gays shouldn’t be so blatant.

or this straight couple sits next to you in a movie and
you can’t hear the dialogue because of the sound effects?
BUT gays shouldn’t be so blatant.

and the woman in your office spends an entire lunch hour
talking about her new bikini drawers and how much
her husband likes them?
BUT gays shouldn’t be so blatant.

or the “hip” chick in your class rattling like a mile a minute
while you’re trying to get stoned in the john, about the
camping trip she took with her musician boyfriend?
BUT gays shouldn’t be so blatant.

you go in a public bathroom and all over the walls there’s
john loves mary, janice digs richard, pepe loves dolores, etc. 
BUT gays shouldn’t be so blatant.

or you go to an amusement park and there’s a tunnel of love
and pictures of straights painted on the front and grinning
couples are coming in and out.
BUT gays shouldn’t be so blatant.

fact is, blatant heterosexuals are all over the place.
supermarkets, movies, on your job, in church, in books,
on television every day and night, every place, even in gay bars. 
and they want gay men and women to go hide in the closets.

so to you straight folks i say,
“sure, I’ll go if you go, too”
BUT i’m polite so, after you.

There are two Black lesbians who I was privileged to learn from who made a great difference in my life: Audre Lorde and Pat Parker. Not only were they out as lesbians in their writing in the early 1970s, but they were incredibly political women who did not have the illusion that it was enough for them just to pursue their individual artistic careers and let the rest of the world go hang.
—  Barbara Smith, “Doing it from Scratch: The Challenge of Black Lesbian Organizing,” from The Truth that Never Hurts , 176
For the White Person Who Wants to Know How to Be My Friend

by Pat Parker

The first thing you do is to forget that i’m Black.
Second, you must never forget that i’m Black.

You should be able to dig Aretha,
but don’t play her every time i come over.
And if you decide to play Beethoven – don’t tell me
his life story. They made us take music appreciation too.

Eat soul food if you like it,
but don’t expect me to locate your restaurants
or cook it for you.

And if some Black person insults you,
mugs you, rapes your sister, rapes you,
rips your house, or is just being an ass –
please, do not apologize to me
for wanting to do them bodily harm.
It makes me wonder if you’re foolish.

And even if you really believe Blacks are better lovers than
whites – don’t tell me. I start thinking of charging stud fees.

In other words – if you really want to be my friend – don’t
make a labor of it. I’m lazy. Remember.

Everytime we let straights make out in bars while we couldn’t touch because of laws–It was an act of perversion.

Everytime we put on the proper clothes to go to a family wedding and left our lovers at home–It was an act of perversion.

Everytime we heard “Who I go to bed with is my personal choice–It’s personal and not political” and said nothing–It was an act of perversion.

Everytime we let straight relatives bury our dead and push our lovers away–It was an act of perversion.
—  Excerpt from Pat Parker, “Boots are being polished” 1978.
MY LADY AIN'T NO LADY by Pat Parker

my lady ain’t no lady

she doesn’t flow into a room
she enters & her presence is felt
she doesn’t sit small
she takes her space
she doesn’t partake of meals
she eats -replenishes herself

my lady ain’t no lady

she has been known to
speak in a loud voice
pick her nose
stumble on a sidewalk
swear anther cats
swear at me
scream obscenities at men
paint rooms
repair houses
tote garbage
play football
& numerous other
un-ladylike things


my lady is definitely no lady
which is fine with me

cause i ain’t no gentleman.

- Pat Parker

youtube

Black lesbian poet Pat Parker reciting her poem “Don’t Let the Fascists Speak”.

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Famous Lesbians:

Pat Parker (1944 - 1989) - Lesbian Feminist Poet
USA

  • was involved in the Black Panther Movement, and toured with the Varied Voices of Black Women, a group of poets and musicians
  • founded the Black Women’s Revolutionary Council in 1980, and she also contributed to the formation of the Women’s Press Collective, as well as being involved in wide-ranging activism in gay and lesbian organizing
  • of her first husband in 1962 she said she “scared to death of him”, of her second husband she said the “idea of marriage… wasn’t working” for her, and in 1975 she said “after my first relationship with a woman, I knew where I was going”
  • published seven books between 1972 and 1978
  • was the medical coordinator at the Oakland Feminist Women’s Health Center from 1978 to 1987

Happy Black History Month!

20 Reasons you should love Spider-Girl!

Happy May Day one and all. Since this day shares a name with a certain daughter of our friendly neighbourhood wall-crawler (and because this year marked her 20th anniversary) we’re going to list of 20 reasons you should love Spider-Girl!

No deep dive analysis I am afraid and these are in no particular order.

Without further adieu…

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