Saturday, April 2, 2011



WHAT AFRICA MEANS TO ME ________________________________________________

“Copper sun or scarlet sea, Jungle star or jungle track, Strong bronzed men or regal black What is Africa to me?” —Countee Cullen, “Heritage,” Color ________________________________________________

Africa to me was my black boyfriend—listening to him after sex—my ear on his chest. Listening to his low Darby Jones-Jacques Tourneau voodoo heartbeat—“I Made Love to a Zombie” the story of my life back then. Beating low, slower & slower, then cane field wind beneath the Haiti moon—coming in thru our bedroom window… Brutally intuitive—intimately knowing what I had wanted since I first saw him—in the basement infirmary serving lunch—his mother the cook while he served the meals—a bland lunch for me since my doctor said so—either that or a peptic ulcer bleeding death in the dorm some night—the first time I’d lived away from home—in a huge dormitory of other young men—their southern male beauty tormenting me—deeply in love yet in the closet… ________________________________________________

And there he was—dressed in his white stiff starched tuxedo-like uniform coat—a black Narcissus angel slithering into the dining room—sizing me up right away, knowing me better than I wanted to know myself—aloof, 18-years-old, already a father of two kids, laying this tray in front of me, pausing just long enough for me to know he was there—catching me in the hall, asking me for a loan, which I quickly forked over, sealing my love with a pre-payment…


So what if I thought he was goodlooking, well-built, even primitive, savage, well-hung? I was just an ignorant honky dirty white boy, I’d never been in bed with a guy, either black or white, but knowing then & there that, yes, indeed, I was not only a sizequeen, something I’d known for a long time. But also something else, something unthinkable, profane, taboo & all that. Each day I lived only for one thing… ________________________________________________

I moved out of the dorm, got a cheap apartment in Tiger Town south of campus, invited him over one night. He got me loaded on some weed—that’s when I saw really just how beautiful he was. He took off his clothes and stood there by the window, letting me glut myself with all I could ogle, this Mandingo man-boy, built like a brick shithouse, not bashful about it, needing some love since his young wife was pregnant again. Soon I was pregnant too, his cumly Delta jizz-jet up my ass & down my throat, doing what he did so well with his wife—bruising my trembling tonsils with his thick Congolese cock, taking his time at it, showing me what it was all about…


Realizing then, knowing it inch-by-inch, skipping classes to be with him, forgetting myself completely, becoming a miscegenal misanthrope, getting a completely first hand intimate lost knowledge account of Faulkner’s Going Down On Moses, like Uncle Buck buying Percival Brownlee, keeping up the Ike McCaslin’s worst fear, continuing the L.Q.C. Carothers curse into another tainted Southern Decadent generation, a campus dinge queen… He was the real reason—the reason why I checked the Box. The little queer box on the questionnaire—that the draft board made me fill out. Viet Nam was warming up—they needed & got lots of dead young American meat, rotting in the jungles over there, the WWII generation’s war against its own children, intergenerational warfare, to control us, the burgeoning baby boomers, before we wised up, knowing we’d revolt sooner or later, which we did with antiwar protests, marches, the hippie exodus, a whole generation’s diaspora from its VFW fathers… ________________________________________________

I wasn’t just queer—I was in love with a young black man. Not another whitey kid—something much worse than that—they couldn’t believe it. They all looked at me—the sneering army doctor, the pansy psychiatrist, the rude sergeant. I stood there naked, self-conscious & yet I wasn’t ashamed. No guilt or self-loathing plagued me then—I’d already crossed the Rubicon a long time ago. All I could think about was young Tyrone back in the apartment—sleeping in bed when I left for my appointment with America. Africa was on my mind—the rest of the fuckin’ day. _______________________________________________

There I was naked—the epitome of Southern youth. Not only a queer & sizequeen—but also an admitted, unabashed, shameless, wretched dinge queen. Prove it, the psychiatrist said. I pulled outta my billfold a photo of me & Tyrone—both of us in bed nude. I knew a picture was worth a million words—and this one did the trick. The look on their faces—still not believing me. Then they looked down & saw a had an erection—I kissed the photo & my penis got even more swollen. I closed my eyes—the next thing I was out the door…


“Well?” Tyrone asked—as I came thru the door. He was in bed as usual—smoking a big fat joint. The Cuba boyz back in the dorms had connections—still going back to Havana. I took a toke—and got into bed. All I wanted was to stay there in his arms—and feel my zombie kid breathe in & out. Now I was one of the walking dead too—I no longer lived among the living. At least the straights anyway—that’s what Africa meant to me. Freedom, baby—FREEDOM!!!

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