17 May 2012

International Day Against Homophobia/RIP Donna Summer

How sad and slightly ironic that the "Disco Queen" Donna Summer should pass today, the International Day Against Homophobia. Founded by the Martiniquean academic Louis-Georges Tin, the day attempts to coordinate events around the world to garner support and respect for lesbians and gays.

So to lose Donna today - Wow...Her music was the soundtrack of my young and not so young life. You HAD to hear a Donna Summer song at least once every time you went to a club. Although she became 'Born Again' and may have fallen and bumped her head on a Bible at one point, most of us continued to love her and play her music. In addition to a terrific (underrated) voice, Donna's music was all about love and joy (and not just the infamous, glorious "Love to Love You Baby" kind of love either.) There's an infectious joy to Donna Summer's music, which we all tried to embody on the dance floor.

In the midst of dealing with very sad news related to the bullying of both adults and teens, it is so important to remember this community of loving friends we have around us, and try to expand it and make it embrace the world.

A poem by the fabulous D. A. Powell. My apologies to him for not being able to accurately capture the  spacing of his glorious long lines.

[now the mirrored rooms seem comic. shattered light: I once entered the world through dryice fog]
"this was the season disco finally died" 
- Kevin Killian, Bedrooms Have Windows
now the mirrored rooms seem comic.     shattered light:     I once entered the world through dryice fog
not quite fabulous.     just young and dumb and full.     come let me show you a sweep of constellations:
16, I was anybody’s.      favorite song: dance into my life [donna summer]     and they did dance
17, first fake i.d.     I liked walk away [donna summer] I ran with the big boys 
18, by now I knew how to move.   on top of the speakers.   give me a break [vivian vee]
19, no one could touch me.   donna summer found god.   I didn't care.   state of independence
20, the year I went through the windshield.    sylvester sang     I want to be with you in heaven

I said "you go" and "scared of you."    I listened to pamala stanley   I don't want to talk about it
from Tea by D. A Powell (Wesleyan University Press, 1998)

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