April 25, 2010

Could You Fall in Love With This Face?

My American Dream is a simple one. True love. As defined by every American that's ever dreamed of having a romantic partner, a husband, a wife, a spousal equivalent, a civil unionist, let's not get bogged down by the terms. A boo.

What good is any American Dream without an American dreamer to live the dream with you, mind, body and soul? Would the first black president's story be as compelling without a first black president's soul mate? Heavens, no.

I want what the Obamas got. No, not the presidency. The bond. The partner in peril and triumph. The boo. But I've never had a boo, just meat. All the flesh you can eat but rarely breakfast.

So far, I've been single for life, a co-creation of nightmarish dreams by myself and the world. But I no longer believe in nightmares. I believe that dreams come true. Black men can be president of the USA. Surely, a black man can find true love, at least for a little while, right? Don't I deserve a taste of Happily Ever After with an Asterisk like every American?

Thing is, the first half of my life, I was a closeted basket case who pretty much felt like an unlovable nigger faggot. The world was pretty good at confirming my suspicions, too. Yep, y'all played along real good, give yourselves a hand!

The second half of my life, however, has been quite different. It started out kinda rocky. There was the AIDS baby I got preggers with in 1985, a month after graduating UCLA (where I was a cheerleader). That was a pretty big hit. But here I am, miracle of miracles, alive in the two oh, oh, ohs! And I'm happy to be living with AIDS! I even write novels where the main characters are black and HIV poz like me; and my boys have been nominated for five Lambda Literary Awards!

But, world, there's just this one thing ... I still ain't found no true love, and I don't know if I still believe my American Dream can come true. Can I be loved for all that I am? Can I be loved no matter the color of my skin or what lies underneath?

The world has come a long way since the AIDS Panic of the last century. People with AIDS have babies now, oftentimes with people without AIDS. Science has gotten a good handle on what is and what isn't safe sex. HIV-negative folk can get all the safe nut they want with HIV-positive folks.

So I'm back on the American Meet Market, right? I'm available to both HIV-positive and HIV-negative people, right? Whether or not I find true love is all about who I am, how I took, how I take care of myself, my ambitions, my goals, my values, my beliefs, my ability to be a great lover, the content of my character, stuff like that, right? We all have an equal opportunity to be loved in America, right?

Is my American Dream possible? Am I living in the same America as my fellow Americans? Is there anybody in America who could fall in love with this face and make my American Dream come true?