I have always considered my leanings in life to have been at odds with the pioneer gay singer, Jimmy Somerville.
When I was a teenager, confused and lacking in maturity to investigate and appreciate my gay sexuality, his outwardly gay lyrics seemed to me to be in direct conflict with my aspirations to conform to the ideals of my church and my family and my own deep longings to be a husband and a father.
Even my political views were out of kilter with his.
Now, in my fifties, my wife having bought me a CD of all his music from “Bronski Beat” through the “Communards” to his solo work, I have been mesmerized by his beautiful falsetto voice and his lyrics which have in some cases brought me to tears.
I think I have discovered something wonderful, through working constantly to maintain my acceptance for my gay sexuality, whilst at the same time endeavoring to remain true to the vows I made to my wife thirty years ago.
My development has created within me a capacity to engage with, and enjoy, and revel, in my truth without fear, and to acknowledge it by hearing songs which celebrate the love of men for each other and mourn over their loss.
And also at this time, I was recently affected deeply by the repeat of a 2007 drama called “The Street” written by Jimmy McGovern, in which a demolition man, married with two teenage children is seduced by a colleague during an overnight stay in a twin bedded hotel room.
The seducer, saw in this man a vulnerability which had been suppressed and hidden all his life.
Of course this deep routed fear of being exposed resonated very deeply with me.
The outcome of this drama became quite complex and harrowing for the demolition man as his secret relationship became known to his colleagues and then to his wife and children through a set of circumstances over which he had no control.
The moving element for me, was that he wanted to stay with his wife, but under a new understanding of his truth, of his fidelity and of her forgiveness for his affair.
So my summer has been enhanced with the wonderful work of these two creative “Jimmy (s)” which have helped me to maintain my own connection to my truth and my acceptance of it.
My next blog will be: Paruresis