Armistice Day

Dulce et Decorum Est by Wilfred Owen Bent double, like old beggars under sacks, Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge, Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs, And towards our distant rest began to trudge. Men marched asleep. Many had lost...

Earthrise 1

Three images This picture was taken December 24, 1968, while three astronauts from NASA’s Apollo 8 program were circling the moon. Bill Anders took the picture, and the other two astronauts on the craft with him were Frank Borman and Jim Lovell. The picture was the...

January 20, 2017

Many people are quoting Martin Luther King’s “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” And many people believe that means that eventually things are going to get better. But you know that’s bullshit. There is no “moral universe.” And we...

The political novel: 3

At the time I started writing my first gay political novel, I had only been out for 24 months, and I was steeping in the literature of gay political theory. The weekend that Charles Howard was murdered (July 7, 1984)—he was the man on whom Bernie Mallett of Ceremonies...

The political novel: 2

Even though I didn’t have many extended, free-wheeling conversations with friends about the military’s rules against my serving (I served anyway), still the fact that what I was doing sexually was a crime occupied me deeply. A novel about me during the sixties in...

The political novel: 1

Writers write about political subjects all the time—Henry James wrote about the place of women in late nineteenth century England, and Charles Dickens wrote about the legal system and the poor in the nineteenth century, William Faulkner wrote about black people in the...

Beginning notes toward answering the question, “OK, where are we?”

Chris Hayes is said to have said, “Great political theatre,” just after Bernie Sanders proposed that the nomination of Hillary Rodham Clinton be accepted by the convention and just after the roll call of states was concluded. But it was much more than that. As Andrea...

Present pride in Boston

Last night, Rachel Maddow interviewed Elizabeth Warren. Warren endorsed Hillary Clinton for the Presidency and, toward the end of her comments, spoke of Clinton’s character and what she has shown through the long primary fight. (counter 8:00) She won because she’s a...

Black Mountain

Twice in the last week, I have heard or overheard other men speak of the new show at the Institute for Contemporary Art in Boston called Leap Before You Look:  Black Mountain College, 1933-1957. I figured something was prodding me, and on Thursday, I went to see for...