The black cloth cover of the Good Book
Makes a fine veil to hide what is most vital
In you: your queer heart.
“Go into your closets and pray,”
Christ admonished, and you obeyed
And have never left that closet since
But shout out of it invectives
Against your own kind
As a way of smothering
The gentle cacophony of desire
That plays in you night and day,
Lest someone espies what is obvious to us all.
“The only way to hide,” wrote the gentleman,
Is never to have been born at all.”*
*Martin Greif on Willa Cather in the Gay Book of Days
Randall Ivey’s work has previously appeared in Impossible Archetype, Assaracus, Chelsea Station, and other publications gay and non-gay. He is the author of a novel, three short story collections, and a book for children.