On how I want to be, possibly - Part 1

I'd like to share with you a poem I found yesterday, Give Me Your Eyes by Angelina Weld Grimke.

             Give me your eyes.
I do not ask to touch
The hands of you, the mouth of you,
Soft and sweet and fragrant though they be.
No, life your eyes to mine;
Give me but one last look
Ere I step forth forever,
E'en though within that moment's crashing space
I shall know all of life and death and heaven and hell.

This poem is supposed to encapsulate the longing which Grimke felt for women and the restraint with which she controlled it. And even though I do not know what this restraint is, something in the verse speaks strongly to me. You can read more about her here.

Also, yesterday I go for a walk in the rain. It is not so much for pomp as by circumstance, a light shower catches me halfway home. Luckily I am close to Megamall when this happens so I go in and buy an umbrella which I dearly hope but don't believe will last me more than two months like my last umbrella did - goddamned made-in-China trash.

And then I go home and have dinner (beef jerky, fried egg, garlic rice) then after that I wash my face and brush my teeth with a bottle of Jack shot of vodka and then I try to decide what to wear. I'm thinking that I'll just wear the same t-shirt I'm wearing like I'm that guy who doesn't really care about his clothes but I remember there is a dress code so I pick out a nice shirt. Actually it is the only nice shirt that I have. Anyway, the next thing I know my phone is ringing and it's Elaine, Elaine is downstairs. 

We take a cab to her place where we chill for a while. Well, I chill for a while while she's busy eating dinner/putting on her make-up/getting dressed/smoking. Also, we talk for a bit and there's a part where I'm sat on her couch watching The Vampire Diaries and falling in love with Ian Somerhalder and she's in her room and also we're talking about whatever when she says out of nowhere, "You know what Drew, I'm so glad you're not a butterfly. I don't think I could hang out with you if you were. I mean, they're really fun and all that but I think if I spent a lot of my time with them I'd go crazy."

This gives me some pause because I share the same sentiments she does, like I find that too much camp can be grating and this used to make me feel guilty because I'm gay and I thought that I had to accept all gays too. And then I remembered that I'm all for transcending the boundaries of sexual identity and that although on the surface being camp has to do with being gay, it doesn't really. So that made me feel less guilty.

It also made me consider my obsession with the macho ideal. I admit it is something that I think a lot about; I am constantly agonizing over the fact that I am not masculine enough, physically. And I know that this is entirely superficial but it does not change the fact that what I find beautiful is this - a well-built body, a restrained demeanor, and purposeful movement. Or to put it crudely, "bawal ang mataba, bawal ang maingay, bawal ang malamya." These strokes, of course, are quite broad and only meant to outline my idea of an ideal. Consider David. He is standing still forever but thanks to Michelangelo's skill, we can imagine him in motion. We can see the strength and grace in that powerful body. Even at rest, relaxed, he is not limp but self-possessed.

David could very well be gay. 

I'm afraid that this entry has spun wildly beyond what I imagined it would be when I set off, and that I have rambled on long enough. More of my thoughts on this (as well as the rest of my story) when I have put them in the right order. Also, I have to exercise/wash the dishes/do the laundry.


  1. That one last look that might as well have ended the world and came crashing down.

    That same last look one had to give in order to bid farewell.

    Touching, truly touching.

  2. Drew!!! Mean girl ka!!!

    Ang dami namang bawal!!!!

    Do you ever ask why you are obssessed with the macho ideal?


  3. "I'm so glad you're not a butterfly."

    I'd go crazy as well. I dunno. It trespasses some boundary or some sort. (well that's me.)

  4. camp can be grating and this used to make me feel guilty because I'm gay and I thought that I had to accept all gays too- natawa naman ako dito

  5. Yeah, Drew. What is it with the macho ideal? They say we endlessly chase after what we are not. I only met you once but I don't think you're un-macho.

    This reminds me of a conversation I had with some gay friends. It's weird how gay people come in different shapes and sizes. The culture is born out of diversity and openness to differences. But then again, we have so much discrimination and too many labels. I don't know. I thought it was rather curious.

    And as for David, hmmm... now that you've mentioned it. lol

  6. Kane, I don't actually mean bawal in the sense na ayoko ng mga ganyan. I am borrowing this maxim from the profiles of PlanetRomeo - where insensitivity and judgment is rampant.

    As for my obsession with this ideal, I am not entirely sure where it comes from. I remember having these concerns even as a child.

  7. Alterjon, as for me, it's not so much the transgression or what. My stand is that being campy is not necessarily an intrinsic of being gay. It's a personality type like any other and it just so happens that I can't stand too much of it. I'm introverted so dealing with too much energy can be tiring for me! Hehe.

  8. Orally, sige, tawanan mo lang ako! Hmp! :P

  9. Nyl, my definition of ideal is something that I aspire but can't even reach. It's the limit to which my curve is asymptotic. HAHAHA. I'll explain more on different shapes/sizes/discrimination/labels in the next post.

    And as for David, think about it. What if David were gay? I think we find it difficult to dissociate our gender identity with the way it expresses itself physically. We're so caught up in associations and we have to assign causality. It's like -' ah, he has a gym body because gays are vain about their body'. Or, yeah 'he's really manly because he's in the closet and trying to pass off as straight'. I find this shit ridiculous. Can't someone be masculine simply because it is a physical ideal that they aspire to?

  10. Good point. It's like white leather shoes. Mostly, it's a red flag in our collective gaydars. But I'm pretty sure somewhere out there, a straight guy just knows it looks better with certain outfits. lol

  11. The poem speaks of a longing so intense that a glance can suffice. One last look that can preserve the emotion, one thing she could hold on to. No more than that. Beyond which would be too much to deny, to pretend, to control.

    As to the definitions of machismo, it still is a matter of discretion. And preferences.

    An ideal is precisely that, and idea. The conception being a translation of the perfection we imagine. But to dwell on that ideal would be a detachment from reality.

  12. I have figured out only just now that David is beautiful because he is an image of restrained strength and motion.