A REACTION TO PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE OCTOBER 1979 MARCH ON WASHINGTON FOR LESBIAN AND GAY RIGHTS — PRESERVED IN TIME BY SHARON FARMER.
Gathering. Gathering for good. Gathering closely and in safety. Gathering for visibility. Gathering to say my rights are just as valid and worth protecting as yours. Both of our rights are worth protecting.
Gathering in joy. “Lesbians can make great mommies, too!” A person who can love and be loved — and have determination to provide can make great parents, too. But it’s not your right to decide if I get a chance to love and be loved and be determined to provide. So here they, I, we are.
So many smiles. Visibility, dignity and respect for your identities has the possible side effect of uncountable smiles.
Gathering for good. Gathering for visibility. Gathering to March for our Rights.
Michelle. We gathered. You documented. You directed. You Direct!
Attention. Action. Energy. Preservation. Documentation. To exist beyond today and beyond the here and now. But for the present and future. The minds, eyes and hearts — of the present and future.
I wonder what your navigating that sea of people looked like that day. Did they understand the goals of your presence? Your goals to preserve? Your goals to reach and climb that scaffold? Did the sea part for your easier navigation? Did the sea create a wave to block your navigation? How did you learn to dance with the sea?
Seeing you in action, capturing the action — empowering others and youngsters to do the same.
Even in your casualness. Even in glory and recognition.
Even when being humbled. Even when you think no one is watching — because you hold few, if any, concerns for who may be watching. And thinking of you.
A lesson on the art of bringing your full self to space. On taking up space. On paying the others in the space “no mind.”
The poise. The character. The swag. The sophistication.
Is that of Queens.