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World AIDS Day


Bill, Cory, Don, Gabe, Jessica, Jim, Mark, Sarah ...

and all the others

too many others




Paul Monette


(Originally published in Love Alone:  18 Elegies for Rog)




everything extraneous has burned away

this is how burning feels in the fall

of the final year not like leaves in a blue

October but as if the skin were a paper lantern

full of trapped moths beating their fired wings

and yet I can lie on this hill just above you

a foot beside where I will lie myself

soon soon and for all the wrack and blubber

feel still how we were warriors when the

merest morning sun in the garden was a

kingdom after Room 1010 war is not all

death it turns out war is what little

thing you hold on to refugeed and far from home

oh sweetie will you please forgive me this

that every time I opened a box of anything

Glad Bags One-A-Days KINGSIZE was

the worst I’d think will you still be here

when the box is empty Rog Rog who will

play boy with me now that I bucket with tears

through it all when I’d cling beside you sobbing

you’d shrug it off with the quietest I’m still

here I have your watch in the top drawer

which I don’t dare wear yet help me please

the boxes grocery home day after day

the junk that keeps men spotless but it doesn’t

matter now how long they last or I

the day has taken you with it and all

there is now is burning dark the only green

is up by the grave and this little thing

of telling the hill I’m here oh I’m here


Roger died of complications of AIDS in 1986; Paul in 1995 


( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
Dec. 1st, 2005 11:34 am (UTC)
Dec. 1st, 2005 01:51 pm (UTC)
Thanks for noticing the post. I spent two years volunteering fulltime for an AIDS organisation, so this is still something that I care deeply about. I just hate to see it slipping off the radar screen (case in point is your Swaziland link). *sigh*

Someday when I'm caught up telling you all the other things about myself that you want to know, remind me to tell you my whole AIDS-volunteer story. Actually, it ties in with something I promised to tell rosybug a few ... months *blinks* ... yes, months ago and still haven't gotten around to doing.
Dec. 2nd, 2005 11:48 am (UTC)
I think we're going to have to have coffee together sometime.
Dec. 2nd, 2005 12:33 pm (UTC)
Sounds like a lovely idea, but it may have to wait until you're back on this continent again or I get a computer and can sign up for MSN. :-(
Dec. 1st, 2005 12:02 pm (UTC)
And unfortunately... Though I can say that Russia is making some (read: SOME) positive steps. Some. At least, there was a programme on television last year addressing AIDS prevention. Small steps. Small.
Dec. 1st, 2005 01:43 pm (UTC)
Look for a WA post from Angie. Someone pointed a letter out to her that she wants to bring to the Russian president's attention. (Think of it as her first "giving Vlad hell" (albeit mildly this time) post.)
Dec. 2nd, 2005 11:46 am (UTC)
Lol. He's just trying to be nice. And sort of a nudge-nudge-someone-called-me-a-flawless-democrat-let's-not-go-forgetting-that. Ha ha ha. I could barely believe it when I saw it!!!
Dec. 2nd, 2005 12:00 pm (UTC)
Sorry dear, was referring to the wrong letter. Will go look at that in a moment. *shakes head at Russia*
Dec. 1st, 2005 05:44 pm (UTC)
Amazing. I had not read that before. Ouch.

I'm sorry for your losses.

Thank you. ::hugs:::
Dec. 6th, 2005 07:07 am (UTC)
Saw part of the 46664 concert the other night, with inserts about AIDS awareness in South Africa. Devastating. Completely.

Here, in some (*large) parts of the country, about 35% of the people between the ages of 15 and 35 are HIV positive.

Don't have an appropriate icon for this.
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )