Editors Mandy Ross and Jo Brookes choose ten poets who have given readers a glimpse of same-sex loves and lives through history. Their poems explore love in many guises – fleeting or decades-long, open or clandestine, remembered or anticipated.
In their Introduction, the editors discuss how “This is a moment to celebrate history’s great enlightened shift towards equal marriage. It has been a long and hard-won victory in many western countries, and the struggle is not yet over. In many places around the world, centuries of stigma have not shifted, and same-sex lovers are still cruelly persecuted.”
But they also point out that we shouldn’t assume an unbroken history of oppression. “In his plea for kindness within marriage, the fourteenth-century Sufi poet Hafiz includes “men and men who are lovers, and women and women who give each other light”. He begins, “It happens all the time in heaven…”.
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- Candlestick Press
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