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Duane Simolke

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by Duane Simolke

Sunday, August 12, 2001
Rated "R" by the Author.
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This poem deals bluntly with unprotected sex among gay men. It might offend some people, which wasn't my intention. It might scare some people, which *was* my intention. "Bareback" is from my book Holding Me Together, which also includes some of my most popular essays (such as "Reactions to Homophobia" and "Not Worth Dying Over").

Louder, louder, the music pulsing
harder. Lights flashing, faster.
Young male bodies grinding harder
on the crowded dance floor,
in the ecstasy of ecstasy.
Heat, sweat, eyes, hands,
another night, pulsing faster
than crystal shooting
through your veins
harder than a stranger
in a hurry, in a daze.
Simply in. He says itís better

And you think it canít happen to you,
but if it did, the new magic pills
would make it go away,
but this time it pulses faster
than crystal shooting
through your veins,

faster than insurance running out,
faster than parents walking away,
faster than friends dying off,
faster than a virus mutating,
faster than another cure failing,

faster than the thirty seconds
he wouldnít take
to open a package
and slide on a condom.

But all that happens off stage.
With perfect hair and perfect clothes,
we live in the safety of the dance floor.

Make up a name,
and tell me, do you ride
skin to skin?


Holding Me Together by Duane Simolke
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Reviewed by Tami Ryan 11/1/2003
A powerful message, well expressed. You have a voice that deserves to be heard. Bravo!

Reviewed by Bhuwan Thapaliya 10/30/2003
Powerful messages in verse!!!
Reviewed by C.S. Snow (Reader) 9/12/2003
ummm...couldn't disagree more, (BB is the natural order of things no matter what the CDC says) but, good write!
Reviewed by Ashraf Goreja (Reader) 8/13/2003
A nice poem.
Reviewed by Stacey Thompson 5/26/2003
Very well done and heartfelt. You've captured the energy of the dance floor and the emotion. Good job!
Reviewed by Jennifer Holly MacDonald 5/16/2003
Thank you for the great work. It flows really well and is easy to read and understand. I wish more poetry was like that.
Reviewed by Huda Orfali 5/11/2003
Wow, so powerful and very daring.
Keep up the good work.
Reviewed by Alex 5/1/2003
Dear Duaen!

I placed a link to your "Bareback" poem on entrance page. Hope you don't mind. I believe it must be shared with as many people as possible!

Thank you!
Reviewed by Jacqueline VanZandbeek 3/14/2003
Very well done, once again.

Yes, this is a poem to be shared.
Reviewed by Trey Bienville (Reader) 1/18/2003
Wow, well said... Duane!
Reviewed by Heather Bricklin (Reader) 1/12/2003
When we give them information, they think it can't happen to them; when we touch their hearts, they know that it can.
Reviewed by Tim 10/27/2002
Sad but true
Reviewed by Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado 9/10/2002
this is terrific, duane!!
Reviewed by frederico 8/18/2002
Reviewed by Nigel Symon (Reader) 8/9/2002
Hi Duane this is just a fantastic piece of poetry. Loved every bit of it.
Reviewed by Paul Calvin Wilson (Reader) 7/25/2002
This is excllent. It captures the excitement of meeting someone new in a club, and the frenzied sex that inevitably follows. Stark warning, and very, very good.
Reviewed by Krisie Norment (Reader) 4/4/2002
Important message passed along in beautiful message.
Reviewed by Mitzi Jackson 3/29/2002
Very,very powerful piece of work & I agree with C Webb
Reviewed by Sandi Schraut 8/13/2001
Yes a very necessary bit of information to pass along and the poem was fantastic as well!
Reviewed by Cyrus Webb 8/13/2001
powerful message... for people of all sexual preferences.
a must to share with others!
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