celebrating and creating our own LGBTQ+ history in honour of Sheila McWattie

Archive for February, 2015

day eight

Soon there will be bluebells



All but perfect.

Primrose nestled in the rootwork

of this mellow ash,

backed by holly

and the gentle scent of wild garlic

under the Spring sun warming all –

so nearly all –

but the missing note, I know,

is you.

Just you.





Sarah Tait, 43, Ramsgate

day seven

Twenty 2:


Thrown up against

The glass windows of the midnight

Buried in rain

Buried on doorstep

tasting your drenched out hair product on your face

to your lips.


With memory tastes

my mouth tastes now

like it tasted you then.

The water from the sky

Fed my body

So it could build to love you.

It fed my arms to adore you

Manifest that love in ways no one else could.

Chambers of my heart sing!


Taste me on the streets

On escalators

At restaurant tables

At a desk

At an open window.

In the rain

When glances across your imagination are so real you can touch them from across the room.


Want me

Go on

Miss and want me

Reach for me across train platforms

Look for me

With the deep rooted notion

That search

That sense

That taste of every midnight

Of every glass window


Of every rain.



Adam Lott, 35, Kent

day six




She snuggles in beside me – tight so not a hair could come between us. I feel the warmth of her body and the gentle ebb and flow of her breathing as she slips into sleep. I feel a profound, almost painful love for her. People don’t really understand.

‘that’s just weird’

I take no notice of course. No-one but me gets to decide who sleeps in my bed. Sometimes I feel sorry for those who haven’t felt the overwhelming joy of the unconditional, forever love that I feel for her vulnerable self. I adore her.

‘Just come and meet her’ they said.

‘Nope, not interested. Never again’

I was perfectly sure I was not ready for another relationship. Too much trouble. I wasn’t ready to be tied down.

‘Honestly, you will love her – really’

And they were right. We saw each other across the room. Our eyes locked and I knew immediately that despite all of my best intentions she would be coming home with me.

She makes me laugh, she makes me cry, she drives me mad, she is demanding and unreasonable and noisy and greedy and she pees on the carpet.

Puppy love.


Lel Meleyal, Brighton

day five



I didn’t get it!

Around about the age of 13, my sister and all of my friends went daft. They suddenly started to get stupid and giggly over boys we had known for our whole lives as scabby little scoundrels we wouldn’t give the time of day to.

I just didn’t get it!

My sister spent hours in her bedroom, mooching over some boy and listening to love songs with a gormless look on her face. I found myself a boyfriend or three just to try it out.

But I still didn’t get it!

At 17 I was desperate to leave home so I joined the Army. (Please don’t judge me, I was young!) On the first day we got a warning about girls being ‘over friendly’ and were advised to steer clear.

I didn’t get it!

I few weeks in, I was walking across the base when a girl jogging towards me tripped and fell. Smack, down on all fours at my feet; with admirable dexterity and lightning wit she got herself up on one knee, looked into my face with huge beautiful brown eyes and said, ”Will you marry me?”


My belly did a few Olympic standard flip flops, blood rushed to my nether regions, my heart went super-nova and I suddenly understood the words to every love song ever written.






Megan Williams, 60, Mid Wales.

day four


The pier train rattles across the estuaries silk lines,

Slick water pools in hesitant bunkers,

A glint of phosphorescent on the distant pulling tide,

Funnels jut definitely along Canvey’s coarse shore,

The dark inky night engulfs the boards,

A lone seal bobs with wide warm eyes,

The electric neon sparks fluorescent and in time,

Ignite the flooding dock, siren, discover me,


I sit alone, directly beneath Venus’s steady light.




Nat Bullard, 31 Essex

day three

True Love


True love has no rules,

It doesn’t care about boundaries,

It won’t be tamed by expectations…

Of yourself or of others.


True love ignores labels,

It can’t conform to stereotypes,

It refuses to accept judgement…

Of yourself or by others.


True love forgets prejudice,

It isn’t interested in ‘normal’,

It won’t listen to negative voices…

From yourself or from others.


True love cares about hearts,

It is ruled by individual truths,

It wants only respect and pride…

In yourself and of others.






Beth Angharad James, 33, Kent

day two


Sentient dogs and juvie seagull pleasures.

These stones in this spot and this moment’s float alone on in and out wash.

Practice for when we’re grown and time to dive for more than just the fought over trailing bladderwrack and plastic that could be crustacean shell bonus on the day.


JJ, 50, Brighton

day one

TOMBOY – By Jacqui Soo, 53 and a proud Scouser.


“You’ll never make a lady out of that one” uttered my paternal grandmother to my Mother when I was aged about 3.

How right she was. I am the only girl with four brothers. Second born and teacher to the younger three lads (and subsequently, most of their mates). It was I – not the eldest – who took them for their first pint, to the match for the first time and educated them on how to treat a girl when taking her on a date. And it was me, not the boys, who was the best footballer, so said my Dad.

I was his chippy’s mate and hod carrier and I loved mixing cement with my Dad. The viscosity was mesmerising. So much better than making batter for Yorkshire puddings. “Please Mum, don’t make me make the gravy” I pleaded on a Sunday. It is a sacrilege to make lumpy gravy and I couldn’t quite understand the alchemy involved in producing a smooth gravy from meat drippings and Burdall’s gravy salt.

They are all jealous of my footballer’s legs with chunky calves and thick, muscular thighs. But that wasn’t an accident either. From the Summer I left junior school in 1973, I started work on a milk round. 7 days a week for thirty bob. Carrying a full crate of milk from the 14th floor of a tower block down to each level gave me forearms like hams. Then there was the swimming and the hockey, netball, rounders and athletics. I was the typical all rounder. I insisted on wearing shorts. No skirts even on the sports field. My Mum even wrote me a note to excuse me from wearing a skirt to school. I hated them with a vengeance.

My Mum refused to buy me monkey boots as an 11 year old so with my wages from the milk, I bought my own. Maroon with yellow stitching. I loved them. A forerunner to my love affair with DM’s. I kept the receipt from my first pair of branded jeans. Wranglers costing £6.99 from All Mankind when I was 13. Then came the denim jacket. All that was missing from my life was a motorbike. I’m saving that for my mid-life crisis!

I love being a tomboy. It liberated me. I didn’t care if people thought I was a lad. I never wanted to be one though, I liked being a girl.

But then I grew my hair. It was after a kd lang concert where every dyke had the same haircut! This was before the variety of styles a la Beckham. So now, it’s down to my waist. I love it. It’s wild and wavy and full of all of the colours of my varied ancestry. I am a Mermaid.

I shocked my Mum in 2005 when out shopping with her. I bought a pink dress. A tomboy dress though. “I have great legs Mum and this will show them off.” Short sleeves to display my firm biceps and forearms and short enough to see the thunder thighs. Full length zipper to reveal a lovely cleavage (good bras are essential). And, to compliment the look, steel toe capped DM boots.

Butch Barbie was born.