Walking with Pride
Dedicated to Andy
by Ryan Bradshaw

I am so proud to be your partner.
Proud to be with someone who's honest and kind,
who possesses a playful, creative mind.
Andy, you are a rare, unexpected find.
And I love gushing about you when I'm on a stage.
I love showing you off on my facebook page.
And yet, when we're in public and you grab my hand... I may not seem very proud.
Holding your hand, it feels a whole lot like inviting a crowd
to tease us and taunt us, to say things that could haunt us.
And what if taunting isn't all that they do?
What if they hurt us? What if they hurt you?
To be honest, I really don't know what I'd do.
And maybe I'm paranoid. Maybe I'm wrong.
I hope that someday I'll feel like we belong.
But when I came out, I was told to beware.
I was taught that my love, even though it's unfair,
I was taught that my love would make some people hate me.
How love can cause hatred will always escape me.
So to walk with pride everyday and not care who can see...
well, I fear that it's too late for me.
But when we're in public and you grab my hand... I don't want to let go.
I think our love is something that we need to show.
Even though I feel awkward, self-conscious or scared,
I know nothing is changed if nothing is dared.
And holding your hand, it feels a whole lot like inviting a crowd
to see a man love a man as much as anyone can.
Andy, I am so proud to be your partner, and I really do want everyone to see.
But to hold your hand without being afraid... well, I fear that it's too late for me.
Still, I hope you never stop grabbing my hand, even when I hesitate.
Maybe we'll help the world change, because for someone else, it's not too late.


© 2014 Ryan Bradshaw


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