This morning I’ve been thinking that persimmons are the late-to-come-out queer poet elders of fruits. People either love them or are unaware of them, they are very messy/ tender, and they are difficult to market as commodities, as they are most delicious after their expiration dates, when they can only be sold at a steep discount.
I’m late on so many things often (and simultaneously right on time, like this persimmon). Having licked my wounds from the loan forgiveness reversal debacle, I filed today to consolidate my FFELP loans into a Direct Loan with the Department of Education, after two weeks of research (there’s no good reason not to, disregarding anything the nefarious lender in question says).
And now I’m making a consolidated Bisexual Visibility/ World Mental Health/ National Coming Out Day post: I knew as a teen I was attracted to more than one gender expression. I was lucky enough to have some real, meaningful (if messy) opportunities to explore that. I was in my mid-thirties when I finally allowed myself to embrace the foundational reality of queerness as I experience it. bell hooks really said it best: “[Queer] not as being about who you’re having sex with – that can be a dimension of it – but queer as being about the self that is at odds with everything around it and it has to invent and create and find a place to speak and to thrive and to live.”
This journey unfolded directly alongside a mental health journey — I don’t see how it could be otherwise. Having been in various forms of therapy for over 15 years, I’d like to say that all I’ve needed was to reach some critical level of self-acceptance and self-compassion — those things ARE vital, of course, and therapy helped me find my life — but the truth is that the two biggest factors (either exacerbating or mitigating) have been financial/ housing in/security and community/ partnership. We really can no longer afford to think of mental health/ healing in individualistic or apolitical terms.
Even this persimmon is anticapitalist — look at how slowly and deliciously it resists reification.
[3 pics of a persimmon at stages of being eaten in a small ceramic bowl]