Objects in the mirror are closer than they appear…

objects in the mirror are closer than they appear

it’s a warning

that things may not yet be
completely behind you.

it might appear
to you and to all who use convex mirrors

and a bit of smoke

that you are past all that.

beyond it.

moved on.

but it is always still
closer than it appears

it’s not that looking back is courageous
so much as not looking back is naive.
often reflecting back is
a prerequisite
to moving on.

It is time to call it — Gay is. That is all.

The previous two generations have been feverishly rewriting passages in the bible since 1950, in an obvious attempt to demonize homosexuality. The result is horrific. We have everything from anti-gay sermons being delivered from otherwise reasonable pastors, like Louie Giglio, all the way down to Fred Phelps of the WBC [intentionally not linked].

It is time to call it. The modern English bibles we are using have been tampered with by people ignorant of homosexuality and fearful of anything and anyone identified as homosexual.

I wrote about how cultural fears have influenced translation before. In that post, I point out the discovery that we traveled from the 1611 King James Version, that admonishes the religious practice of young male temple prostitution, to the 1958 Amplified/1966 Good News/1971 NASV, that each admonish homosexual behavior in a gender neutral manner (i.e., including, however quietly, lesbians). This represents an incredible leap and a blatantly obvious addition to the bible. So much so, that the NIV in 1973 removed the gender neutrality but kept it about homosexual male relationships. In 1994, the New KJV returns to the original KJV words. In 2005, the NCV put male prostitution caveat back in.

So we’re just about full circle on 1 Corinthians 6:9. It was never admonishing homosexual relationships. Future translations should limit their words to something more accurate like: admonishing child sex slave trade, pedophilia, statutory rape, and/or child prostitution.

However, the damage by these fear-based translations has be done. Even Louie Giglio references 1 Corinthians 6:9 in his now infamous anti-gay sermon.

It’s time to call it. We have been duped.

Moving on to Romans 1:26. This verse, we’re taught, admonishes female homosexuality. If we look at translations like the modern New Living Translation, it seems to be pretty clear:

Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other.

But wait, is that what it really says? Returning to the KJV of 1611, we read something very different:

…for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature

There is no mention of what makes up the use which is “against nature.” This is yet another blatantly obvious addition. To be fair, most other translations do not add the admonishment of female homosexuality. However, most pastors and teachers for the last 50 years have done so, within their sermons, regardless. This needs to stop. It’s time to call it.

All we can say about this verse is that “unnatural” sex is sinful. This passage is most likely Paul admonishing the practice of Roman orgies. To focus on or imply that this is admonishing female homosexuality paints Paul and God as homophobic.

It’s time to call it. We have been duped.

This Romans 1:26 revelation ended for me the belief that the bible admonishes homosexuality as a sin. This is the only verse pointed to by conservative Christianity that “clearly” admonishes female homosexuality. So once this falls, we’re left with either God’s a sexist, who coincidentally resembles a typical straight-male point-of-view (where girl-on-girl is okay but not man-on-man), or the prior generation has completely misunderstood and mistranslated God’s word on homosexuality thereby successfully recasting God into their own image.

Given the rather egregious mistranslations cited here, I’m going for door number two. It’s time to call it.

Leaves Love

Something new, inspired by and dedicated to a very good friend. However, it will no doubt speak to anyone who has been there.p1015-19b

Leaves Love

Some day’s a wake; we reminisce.
So much at stake; to love like this.

Our sadness climbs; relentlessly.
From joyful times; oh, family tree.

A photograph; of rings gone by.
A tortured laugh; as we ask why.

The dinner’s set; an empty chair.
Our tears though wet; cannot repair.

This fucking life; it seems so wrong.
Where dirge is rite; and love the song.

If one could take such pain away.
Though hearts will break, we choose to stay.

In pain right now; intensely felt.
To honor bow; we tensely knelt.

Today our grief must own the day.
As fallen leaf returns to clay.

The one who leaves, knows only joy.
To love we cleave; learned as a boy.

Yea, one who’s gone knows perfect peace.
Who’s heart beats on; let love increase.
Whose heart beats on, let love increase.

You know how sometimes…

You know how
sometimes people
in our lives
with whom we’re not terribly close,
(which includes nearly everyone)
like work colleagues for instance,
will, quite inadvertently, say or do something
that must obviously be a personal trigger
instantly teleporting you back across time and space
into that room you’ve been running from
and trapped in your whole life
and your anxiety level skyrockets
but unfortunately and thankfully,
you’ve developed
the keen survivalist talent of hiding your fears
so well the trigger-happy,
soon-to-be ex-colleague/friend,
blissfully and unknowingly continues
dancing with stilettos on your heart,
believing you to be interested
because you are, actually, looking right at them
while looking right past them
while the psychologically bound Pavlovian dog
part of your psyche forever unfairly associates
the person’s face, voice, and scent
with that room
and everything in it you want
to keep getting away from
but the meeting isn’t nearly over,
the problem isn’t nearly solved,
the delivery to the client is looming,
and you catch not nearly enough words
to further any of these noble petty
causes, delaying escape
and lengthening exposure
radiating from otherwise good, rational people
who have their own damn shit and
with whom you have no desire to share any of this
so these people become rather impatient with you
for not hearing them,
causing the inevitable second wave
comprising the winning package of
guilt and shame and self-flagellation
because you fear it’s pretty much all about
that ugly part of you
that you keep putting back on
despite intellectually knowing that
the ugly is what was done
not who you are,
so you find new “friends”
to keep out
while they dance with stilettos on your heart?

Body. Mind. Heart. Soul.

Sometimes I think
I should have run away
Bodily, I mean

Bodily, at rest
Inertial fears press down
A broken peace
A drop in some lost whole

Conflicting memories race
Caging each and every thought
Long to erase the curse
Of a mind that will not forget

As burning red tears pump
Relentlessly throbbing
Within a boney tell-tale chest
A weakness I learned to despise

My soul, tormentor
Forced me to take no prisoners
And throw away the key
To any hope of escape.

I should have run away
Bodily, I mean

To My Two Dads on Father’s Day

Dear Dad & Dad,

This will be my first Father’s Day without either of you — my first fatherless Father’s Day, in the strict, physical sense. This year I did not shop for a card and read all the you-were-always-there-for-me hallmark crap, that sometimes made me cry but mostly drove me insane. I also did not NOT shop for a card, which also sometimes made me cry but mostly drove me insane.

This year I might even go to church on Father’s Day since I will not have to field questions about either of you.

Hey brother, have you called your father? grin. wink.

Although I remember enjoying imagining responses like:

Well, I have called my fathers a lot of things. grin. wink.

Which, in the reality of my mind, sometimes made me cry but mostly just drove me insane.

This year I can simply report that you are both dead. Shutting down any further conversation. That, now that I imagine it, may well make me cry and, in the end, drive me insane. Again.

Then, when people ask me for clarification it sometimes hurts.

Was it your step-dad or your real dad who /abandoned/abused/neglected/ you?

It hurts because both of you are my real dads. And, at the same time, neither of you were.

It hurts because I know the answer to the question is simply, “Yes.” I know I avoided that answer for most of my life because, well, I wanted to be thought normal. When people shared stories about their childhoods, I wanted to join in. Belong. So I never spoke of the time you threw me out of the boat at 3 to teach me to swim. I never spoke of the times mommy was bad and you sent to her room until she could be good. I never shared how much I enjoyed being held by you while you were beating me. I didn’t think anyone would appreciate those stories.

Dads, I sometimes see your reflections in the mirror of my life. In my parenting. In my marriage. In my self. I have hated you for that. And naturally, by extension, I have hated myself. Deeply and passionately.

But now, you are both in a better place. As am I. I want you to know, although you never came to any sporting events, never read any bedtime stories, and never comforted, I am no longer angry. And despite any appearance to the contrary, I no longer hate on you.

Thank you for the good memories and the hugs later in life. Thank you for telling me, “I love you” before you died.

I forgive you, Dad (again). Happy Father’s Day.

I forgive you, Dad (again). Happy Father’s Day.


My Father’s Day is called Easter by everyone else I know…



verb, to stir.
noun, a celebration, albeit painful

I love Mumford & Sons’ music.

(closely related poem: As Apathy Decays)

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