Beautiful, I Say

She always loved the Hallmark Channel at Christmastime—the heterosexual films, cheesy, unrealistic, boy meets girl at airport, boy meets girl at Christmas tree lighting, boy meets girl. What a waste of manhood, She said when Neil Patrick Harris appeared in the opening credits. When a picture of his family popped up on my Facebook feed, She shook her head. I have no problems with gays, She said, I just don’t want them married under God’s roof.

Dancer - Katia Dermott

When I came out as bi, the first thing out of my God’s mouth was let’s not tell Her about this. And sitting on the train, there’s my future wife, but she’ll never know because my girlfriends were prayed into the closet, door closed, light tight, the last coffin nail forced by my hand. Afterwards She took me to get ice cream and pointed at boys, saying, they’re cute. The thick cream caught in my throat.

Luke Cole Swanson became Cole, and my brother didn’t invite her to his wedding. I always comment on Cole’s photos, beautiful, I say. And when my best friend was avoiding a boy who liked him, I subbed for their joint kitchen job because we both knew they would never walk down the aisle together. He was not allowed under Her roof. Cole was not allowed under Her roof. I am not allowed under Her roof. So we’ll all just get married in the rain.