Sunday, January 15, 2006

Uncle Merlin stays up late alone on Brokeback Mountain

Uncle Merlin saw Brokeback Mountain the other night. It affected him deeply. He sat up late thinking about it and deep in the middle of the night he wrote to me about his feelings, giving me permission to publish them here:

It’'s 3 am, and I can'’t sleep. I’'m not tired. I am wide awake not unlike a kid before Christmas morning which I find odd since Christmas was 2 weeks ago. Brokeback Mountain is a living moment for me. It is alive. I see scenes flow up in my mind. And then I see scenes from my life and I can'’t stop looking back over my life.

Staring up at the sky with the clouds scudding overhead under a silver Moon I know they have come from the west, maybe even from Brokeback Mountain itself. I often wonder why I am alone now and why I am not out in the bars or out making whoopee and I always think it'’s my age yet I know in my gut I am not old.

After the movie tonight, the friends I saw it with were regaling me with their sexual escapades in New York last week. I think it'’s a language I don'’t speak anymore, communicating with strangers through sex. I am told over and over there is something wrong with me. Gay men don'’t really live like this. “Are you really gay?” I get that all the time. Thanks for the vote of confidence.

I look at those two boys Ennis and Jack in the story and I live in them. I see my life in them. I have had two loves like that in my life and they are long over. And for that I wonder if I am wasting my life now. If I am being a sucker or if I have just lost my confidence to even try again from a double rejection.

It's 4 am. I try to get back to sleep. But the clouds outside my window are calling me, they glow with moonlight. I am there in those clouds. I am not here, not really, and yet my dog Al snores and suddenly I am back in my bedroom again.

I lay down again and it is then that it hits me, no matter where I am today or who I am not with –I always offered my best, I always did my best for them. And though I no longer see those two men for very different reasons I know I left behind my very best. I also know from Brokeback Mountain I would rather be here tonight than to be speaking a language I don’'t understand anymore. But that’'s just me.

I think I'’ll try to go find a quiet cowboy.


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