Equality has always been part of the struggles of the gay community and through gay/lesbian/queer literature, they are able to express and justify their ideals. In the poem, the main character or the narrator’s identity is vague. It was not made clear if the narrator is a girl or a boy, thus giving a clear light about the “humanness’ of a person; that it does not matter what your sexual preference is, you’re still a human being that needs to be respected in the community.
For the most part of the poem, the author talks about how unclean boys are and it seems like he’s describing them as pigs or something in a very sensual way; somehow ironic and contrasting. I the later parts, he talks about the sensation of sex and the character’s thoughts of reversing roles, that perhaps it might be the right time he will be the one that will seduce the boys, instead of them seducing him/her. The final two lines, “and do the seducing for a little, spare change”, are the most disturbing.I might be wrong on this one, but the “spare change” he/she is talking about is not the subtle role reversal of the character seducing the boys but rather the literal spare change, which is money.
If it were so, then the poem would turn out to be about prostitution. It makes more sense if it really was about prostitution and the character might not be really a she but a man. Most probably the poem really is about prostitution of men or even prostitution on general, which even though illegal, is rampant in our country. The author has shown a side of the male prostitute which many cannot see.
The strength of the character as a person and his dream to one day, or even a moment, change positions and be on top and in control of the situation. The words “spare change” really stuck me. One meaning, as said earlier, is the literal sum amount of money he receives with his job and the other one is the reversal of position. As the character endures the pain: “I’ve tired of the concupiscent moments of hearing the rush of blood into my body’s cavernous pockets: of squeezing shut the dull, exclusive pain of a throbbing, pig-headed erection.
”, and ven though he disgusts it, he has no choice but to do it. Goes to show how desperate these kinds of people are just to get through with their everyday lives.At some point he enjoys it: “and their penises that fill my mouth with a promise of red sunsets bursting like bubblegum dreams, tasteful as sweetmeats gone stale”, but it does not last long. Prostitutes do not necessarily love what they do, but they have to if they want to live.
It’s not like there aren’t any more jobs outside prostitution, but that’s where money’s easiest to get, unless you’re going into illegal drugs.The poem is all about opening others to reality and in a way promote equality to people. It may not seem much, but treating people as they should be is a must. Yes, society’s messed up and people like the gays, lesbians, trannies, or whatever need not to be considered laughing stocks and jokes in the community.
They’re people too. They endure hardships just like anyone else, they have dreams just like any other person, and they have feelings just like you and me.