Lydia Swartz

10 Year Yes

An anniversary rant for Blue, my partner of 10 years.

It started with YES. I said YES I want you. YES come over & fuck me on my birthday. YES come over with your little red circus dog YES. YES I want to fuck you too O YES I do. YES we fucked & YES you beat me hard enough & YES you sang & YES we laughed & fucked some more. YES. YES you might as well spend the night, blissed out & snoring on my thin double mattress.

NO I did not expect you to call me but YES YOU DID. You promised to stalk me YES bring it ON. YES it got to be a habit & YES almost right away we fucking taught the contractor NOT to COME IN even IF the door is ajar, or CALL FIRST DUDE if you are going to BLUSH & STAMMER when you trip over giant soiled dildos on pristine tile in the almost finished shower. YES we are teachers of etiquette YES we sure as fuck ARE.

& YES of course we gotta FUCK ON CAMERA -- after all that's my job, directing porn -- EVEN IF Toys in Babeland will not stock our tape TOO HARDCORE they say WHAT the FUCK? & Mr. Adult Entertainment Lawyer takes a look & says OHO NO! You are GOING TO JAIL if you try to sell THAT shit across state lines but can he keep the tape? YES help yourself dude, You knock yourself OUT but do NOT call us, creepy lawyer dude, NO & fucking FUCK NO. What the FUCK is WRONG with everyone? It is ONLY FUCKING, it's fun & it's love WHAT THE FUCKING FUCK.

YES eventually YES We U-hauled, we no-longer-bachelor dykes YES of course there hadda be U HAUL FOO. It took a year but inevitably YES my 3 cats & YES your 3 cats & only the 1 little outnumbered circus dog & 2 snarky Amazon parrots with no fucking manners at all & YES my car & your car & O GODS YES the tools & the toys & the pictures & saucepans & YES I sweartagod YES even dozens of fucking BEANIE BABIES & forks & knives & hell we need a room for BOOTS ALONE. YES the ludicrous fucktons of shit that 2 confirmed bachelors can & do collect ALL SHIT WE NEED or so we thought in our little houses we thought we were going to live in alone until we died. HA.

YES it was GOOD TIMES in our 1 little house together & YES the house, it was small, it got smaller & smaller YES & the people -- they brought us the cats they thought we might want to nurse back to health & might want to staff their every need & OF COURSE we always said NO which meant YES & we TOOK THEM ALL. YES we fucking did & YES it was us or the cats so YES we shopped for a big enough house to fit ALL THE PETS & a new big bed, a BIG ENOUGH BED for humans too. We bought us a sweet old big enough house & YES the mortgage we signed with both our names YES.

YES. We said YES to all the NORMAL SHIT that QUEER GIRLS do. YES we went to the ocean LESBIANS GO TO THE OCEAN. & YES we pissed off our exes who wanted us always single & pining. & YES of course we went to fag therapists YES, we did our time on the LEATHER SOFA. YES.

& YES We now only have one car &YES what kind of car is that? YES what else it's a QUEER OLD SUBARU YES you bet. You drive & I ride & YES we got the JOINT account & the JOINT insurance & the power of FUCKING ATTORNEY & YES I wear your dead mama's wedding ring & YES you wear my dead daddy's ring & YES my O so alive batty mother even gave up pretending NOT to remember your NAME.

& YES we are so FUCKING married -- but NOT -- ya know cuz we're QUEER, but YES you better believe it YES every time there's a new piece-a queerfolk married-like paper to sign that's not quite the same as marriage -- but YES it's what we get for now & we're queer & so we smile thru our queer old gritted teeth & YES we say YES O thank you YES MAAM & please it's not enough but we'll take it YES hand over that pen now & YES we sign the FUCK outta that near queer marriage paper YES.

& YES all bitter old haggishness aside, YES the day we really got married? The tie no one can cast asunder, the FINAL YES, the commitment QUA QUEER commitment? The serious NO SHIT now it is DONE? That would be the day we bought the big red toolbox & put in its shiny red virgin drawers your tools & my tools all mixed together YES so NO ONE CAN TELL which started out whose. Now THAT my friend, is MARRIED O FUCK YES. Top that, MOTHERFUCKING HETS & we DID NOT even need to rent a FUCKING TUX.

But YES more times. YES let's hear it YES what we've said so often YES O DIDDY WOP DIDDY YES.

FOR INSTANCE: YES I love your sweet old taciturn round bald dad & YES your soft eyed stepmonster YES she hugs me & means it YES. Your sister who talks too much YET loves too little & YES your nieces & nephews the mostly queer gang HA guess it runs in the family YES despite all the fire & FUCKING BRIMSTONE YES. Your brother who sold you & tried to kill you NO I do not love him. YES I'd like to meet the bastard I'd fuck up his face YES I WOULD til it looked like a ripe tomato someone stepped on YES.

& YES there are battles we fought together. YES like the usual deaths & betrayals as time goes by & YES like holding your hand in post-op, & YES the Microsoft blacklist & months of no fucking job & YES our tall trapped guy with his BABY MAMA FROM HELL & YES the year we gave the cat subcu fluids twice every day & couldn't leave town & YES the times we got robbed & YES all the many diagnoses & treatments & shit that will never heal & YES angry squirrels & hungry carpenter ants & other PESTS like the O SO KIND strangers who offer to RESCUE YOU from apparently BAD ASS ME & YES the damage, the lifetime of damage & sorrow any soft fleshed beings with exposed necks suffer, the damage that wants to blind us to love & hope.

YES but it's not JUST all that YES I love every single thing about our married ASS YES.

It started with YES &
YES, it still IS YES
& what we're left with is nothing BUT YES.
Right now it is you & me YES, right here.
Not YES in those 10 years of everyday YES,
but the YES-TODAY YES.
Forget yesterday; it's forgotten us.
But the one and only, we're-here-now YES,
the you & I now YES,
the get on with it, let's love YES -- THAT YES.
Because YES it is YOU-YES
& YES it is ME-YES. It is US-YES,
through YES after YES after every day's YES
we are each other's cult.