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Be Political, Not Polite

I Met A Man

I met a man with arms of steel
He had muscles a-plenty and sex appeal
He was hearty and hale
The essence of male
But his consciousness paled when compared...
To a potato!

Why is it that when they're hot
They're often not aware
They may be buffed
But that's not enough
If their head is full of air

I met a man who made me laugh
He was a good time and a half
He loved to be sleazy
And he wanted to please me
And it would have been easy if I...
Had been attracted to him!

Why is it that when they're fun
They're not the one that you adore?
You could be friends
But then again
You'd hoped for something more

Should you take what you can get
Or take the time to shop for what you're wanting?
Maybe you should check your bait
And take a look at what it is you're flaunting

I met a man who enlightened me
He knew so much it nearly frightened me
We were politically aligned
He was spiritually refined
But socially, kind of a nerd...
Well, more than kind of!

Why is it that when they're smart
And their heart is so pure
They have no frills
Like social skills
To get them out the door?

No one's absolutely right for you
But too much wrong
Can kill the song
You've dreamed so long of writing

music & lyrics © Ron Romanovsky
Published by Bodacious Music (ASCAP)

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When Heterosexism Strikes

You're applying for a job
So you're filling out a form
And for all intents and purposes
You fit into the norm
Until it says to list your next of kin
But there's no box to fit you in
'Cause the one you love
The one who shares your life
Is not your husband or your wife
Oh no!

Heterosexism strikes again
So use the power of the pen
To draw a box of your own and then
Label it however you like:
Lover, spouse, or partner-in-life
That's one way you can fight
When heterosexism strikes

Michael served his country well
When he went to fight the war
And each letter from his lover
He locked safely in a drawer
Until a witch hunt of McCarthy style
Demanded he be put on trial
They said his love, his sexuality
Threatened national security
Oh no!

Heterosexism knocks you down
But pick yourself up off the ground
And challenge them to a second round
Get a lawyer, file a report
Drag their asses back into court
That's one way you can fight
When heterosexism strikes

Don't let them break you, or make you miserable
Don't let them take you, and make you invisible
We're here, we're queer, that's a natural fact
When heterosexism strikes, strike back!

Sharon and her lover Sue
Danced and dined by candlelight
They were one of many couples
Getting intimate that night
Until the waiter asked them both to leave
And they looked at him in disbelief
As he ended their romantic night of bliss
Because they'd had the nerve to kiss
Oh no!

Heterosexism strikes again
But you've got rights you must defend
So get together a group of your gayest friends
Go back to the scene of the crime
Hug and kiss and have a good time
That's one way you can fight
When Heterosexism strikes

Heterosexism on the loose
But you don't have to take abuse
No! Now's the time we can put to use
The righteous anger we feel
The love we're taught to conceal
We've got to stand up and fight
When heterosexism strikes

Don't let them break you, or make you miserable
Don't let them take you, and make you invisible
We're here, we're queer, that's a natural fact
When heterosexism strikes, strike back!

music & lyrics © Ron Romanovsky
Published by Bodacious Music (ASCAP)

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One Of The Enemy

Every day I go to work
I'm there to teach integrity
But how can I teach anything
With a closet door in front of me

'Cause when I look out at the faces
One or two see through the lies
And when I look right back at them
I see the pain of my own youth in their eyes

And it breaks my heart
And it makes me feel ashamed to wear this mask
Each day from 8 to 3
I can't reach out
To the ones who need a friend
So I must pretend to be
One of the enemy

Every year a hundred faces
Staring blindly up at me
How I want to tell the truth
Instead of teaching history

But for job security
I don't dare say a word
And so my good intentions fade
And my thoughts of love are left unheard

And it hurts my pride
And I hate to have to hide myself away
Each day from 8 to 3
I can't reach out
To the ones who need a friend
So I must pretend to be
One of the enemy

To the boys who leave the girls behind
To the girls with more than boyfriends
On their minds
I can't reach out
To the ones who need a friend
So I must pretend to be
I must pretend

Maybe some day I'll find a way (Some day soon I'll find a way)
To comfort them (to calm their fears)
And let them know that things will change
If they can make it through these years

music & lyrics © Ron Romanovsky
Published by Bodacious Music (ASCAP)

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Oh No... I'm In Love

He makes me smile when I am blue
He gives me answers when I really haven't got
A single solitary clue
He makes my troubles seem so small
He's so handsome, dark and tall

He doesn't judge me when I regress
His words are cloaked in tenderness
He's the lover I've never kissed
Oh no...I'm in love

He helps me strengthen my resolve
There's not a problem he can't solve
He's always cheerful, he's never a grouch
Ooh, I wanna lay down on his couch
We get along like soup and salad
He reassures me that my anger is valid
He thinks it's good when I get pissed
Oh no...I'm in love with my therapist

My friends encouraged me to get some therapy
'Cause when you left me I was such a mess
I thought life held no more for me
'Til he opened up his door to me
And I found myself surrounded by his sympathy

He reinforces my self-esteem
He likes to analyze my dreams
He always listens when I speak
I wish I could afford to see him
More than once a week

He lets me try out different roles
He pushes me to set some goals
Each hour we spend together is total bliss
Oh no...
My friends encouraged me to get some therapy
'Cause when you left me I was such a mess
I thought it was the end for me
'Til he became a friend to me
And I found myself astounded by his empathy

He's got diplomas on his wall
There's fresh-brewed coffee down the hall
He's got begonias on his window sill
And Kleenex enough for a nuclear spill

He calls it "progress" when I cry
Oh what a sweet and sensitive guy
Why couldn't you have been like this?
Oh no...I'm in love with my therapist

music & lyrics © Ron Romanovsky
Published by Bodacious Music (ASCAP)

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When I Look Into Your Eyes

When I look into your eyes
I don't see any tears
I know they must be wise
To be living all these years
Your heart is full of love
But you don't know what to say
How did you show your feelings
Back in your day?

How did you love each other?
What secrets did you share?
Your eyes are soft and gentle
But your words don't seem to care

I would not criticize
The way you brought me up
But what was on your mind
The night you thought me up?
Your heart is full of kindness
I can see it every day
Why do you choose to hide it
When I say...

How did you love each other?
What secrets did you share?
Your eyes are soft and gentle
But your words don't seem to care

I know you did the best you could
You did everything a mother should
Now you tell me that you care for me
In birthday greeting rhymes
But I'd like to hear it from your lips
Just one time
'Cause I want to understand
I want to make amends
Why must a generation
Put these miles between two friends?

How did you love each other?
What secrets did you share?
Your eyes are soft and gentle
But your words don't seem to care

music & lyrics © Ron Romanovsky
Published by Bodacious Music (ASCAP)

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Red Moon Over Boston

I've got a view of Boston
From the twenty-second floor
The moon is red
Room service is at the door
I've got songs to sing
And a million things
To distract me when I'm blue
But I don't have you

I've got rolls and rolls of snapshots
From thirty-seven states
I've memorized the slogans
On all the license plates
Oh I've seen the sights
And the neon lights
But I can't enjoy the view
When I don't have you

I close my eyes, I see your face
Staring out the window of a taxi in the rain
I don't know when the road will end
Or how long I will have to wait
To be with you again

There's a waiter making eyes at me
Perhaps he'd take me home
But I know in a stranger's arms
I'd just feel more alone
Oh I've got the chance
For a quick romance
In the lives that I pass through
But I don't have you

(repeat first verse)

music & lyrics © Ron Romanovsky
Published by Bodacious Music (ASCAP)

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Once Upon A Time

Once upon a time when life was simple and serene
My roommate was a lesbian and I, a happy queen
I lived for Sunday brunches in my tightest fitting jeans
While she read 'The Well Of Loneliness' and 'Plexus' magazine

But now I go to potlucks where the food is rather bleak
And I've joined a new support group that meets every other week
While she lives to go out dancing with her hair done up in curls
It's getting hard to tell the boys from the girls

Once upon a time when life was crystal clear
Each of us had favorite music we preferred to hear
While I went dancing to Sylvester down in Key West every year
She went to music festivals to worship Holly Near
But now our tastes in music have completely turned around
And now instead of Michigan she goes to Provincetown
While I play Alix Dobkin on my walkman now and then
It's getting hard to tell the women from the men

Once upon a time when life was easy to predict
Sex was something I could get, and I could get it quick
I'd look at all the men and know that I could take my pick
While she frowned upon my lifestyle with each and every trick
But now my sex adventures, though still fun, are rather tame
While she's discovered JoAnn Loulan and she'll never be the same
'Cause she dates a lot of women and she buys erotic toys
It's getting hard to tell the girls from the boys

Times they change
Fashions rearrange themselves
If you don't stay on top
You'll find yourself dropped on a shelf

Once upon a time when life was black and white
I used to do the drag shows to be famous for a night
While she drank her beer without a glass and looked for Mrs. Right
I'd cruise the local customers just asking for a light
But now she is the only one who steps out in a dress
And I'm wearing all her flannel shirts and sandals, I confess
And now she smokes Virginia Slims instead of Lucky Strikes
It's getting hard to tell the boys from girls
Hard to tell the men from women
Hard to tell the faggots from the dykes

Now if all of this appears to show that everyone's gone mad
It's only part and parcel of a somewhat larger fad
Look no further than the glint of gold in many straight boys' ears
It's getting hard to tell the breeders* from the queers

*The term "breeders" is fading from usage as more gay and lesbian parents become visible (see next song.) However, it fit too well in this lyric not to use it. Cut me some slack, ok?
music & lyrics © Ron Romanovsky
Published by Bodacious Music (ASCAP)

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Love Is All It Takes

Goodnight my daughter
Sleep tight, my son
The world is full of injustices
Of which you known none
I wish that I could shelter you
So you'd never have to see
The ways in which some folks have made
An outlaw out of me

Goodnight my precious
Sweet dreams my little one
While the lawyers and the courts decide
What is to be done
I wish that you could tell them all
When they dare to question me
That we're every bit the model
Of a perfect family

It's not the pot that grows the flower
It's not the clock that slows the hour
The definition's plain for anyone to see
Love is all it takes to make a family

Good night my child
So innocent, so young
When they start teaching you to hate me
I pray you won't succumb
To prejudice and bigotry
To ignorance and shame
Because I'm proud of who I am
And hope you'll feel the same

It's not the pot that grows the flower
It's not the clock that slows the hour
The definition's plain for anyone to see
Love is all it takes to make a family

music & lyrics © Ron Romanovsky
Published by Bodacious Music (ASCAP)

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Be Political, Not Polite

When you speak you often use
Some racist word or sexist phrase
That makes me stop you in your tracks
To note the error of your ways
And I know you find it boring
But it seems to me the only way
To correct you, to object to
The hurtful things you say

Chorus:
Right the wrongs of human rights
The risk you take could save a life
Silence keeps us all in darkness
We can't change it overnight
But we can shed a little light
Be political, not polite

I cannot be satisfied
Knowing just how much you care
I want an ally with a voice
Defending me when I'm not there
'Cause being actively supportive
Is the greatest gift that you could give
By demanding understanding
We can change the world in which we live

(chorus)

Words can hurt, words can heal
Make us think, make us feel
And they're every bit as deadly
As a bullet tearing through the land
For if our words create the climate
Then the blood is on our hands

Every time we hear a joke
That takes a shot at someone else
If we speak up for their rights
We are speaking for ourselves
'Cause we will never have true freedom
'Til everyone one of us is free
From the silence, and the violence
That's become our history

music & lyrics © Ron Romanovsky
Published by Bodacious Music (ASCAP)

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Journal Entry

I saw your new boyfriend
He seems like a jerk
He only said a word or two
But I think I saw a smirk on his face
When I stopped by your place
To say goodbye
And now I really don't now why I bothered

'Cause I'm no good for you
Or maybe nobody's good enough for me

My friends still remind me
Whether I like it or not
Of all the stupid things you do
As if I have forgotten your ways
Or your passionate plays
You gave me everything
I think it was the wedding ring that scared me

'Cause I'm no good for you
Or maybe nobody's good enough for me

I hope maybe someday
We will talk again
And all will be forgiven
And we will both be friends and we'll laugh
At mistakes in the past
'Cause we will know
That we were right in letting go of each other

'Cause I'm no good for you
Or maybe nobody's good enough for me

music & lyrics © Ron Romanovsky
Published by Bodacious Music (ASCAP)

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Queers In The Closet

There's a woman that we all know and love
She's made us laugh for years
We've watched as her talents unfolded
And blossomed into a career
But every time you see her
With her lover on TV
They call themselves "partners"
To keep up the myth
Of heterosexuality

There's a former host of a talk show
As gay as the day is long
But he always sang the wrong pronouns
When he opened with a song
Well it's true he might lose a few fans
But he'd gain one more in me
If he just wouldn't try to live the myth
Of heterosexuality

Chorus:
Queers in the closet in positions of power
Doing a dance on thin ice
Deals with the devil to be heros for an hour
How long must we pay the price
(It's time to think twice)

There's a famous fashion designer
Respected from east to west
We wear his name on our underwear
On our butts, and on our chests
But the ones who buy his clothing
Would prefer to never see
That they're also buying the myth
Of heterosexuality

(Chorus)

There's a singer who's risen to stardom
She got famous overnight
They say that she signed a contract
To keep her lesbian lips sealed tight
When she feels that she's established
Will she come out for all to see
Or will she perpetuate the myth
Of heterosexuality

(Chorus)

Think twice about taking a free ride to freedom
While many are making demands
And we should think twice
About protecting the people
Who think that there's safety in silence
And won't take a stand

music & lyrics © Ron Romanovsky
Published by Bodacious Music (ASCAP)

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Hymn

If there's something to be learned
From examining the past
It's that institutions change
Or else they do not last
Now you are such a dinosaur
In the ancient ways you think
And if you do not soon adapt
You too will be extinct

I believe that Christ's intention
Many centuries ago
Was to serve and to enlighten
And to guide our spiritual growth
But the latest word from Rome
Is not a loving one at all
If Jesus walked on earth today
I think he'd be appalled

Now the priesthood's quickly shrinking
But you won't let women in
And instead of teaching safer sex
You condemn it as a sin
You deny all women the right
To decide their bodies' fate
Suggesting that their purpose here
Is just to procreate

You say that gays and lesbians
Have fallen from God's grace
And tacitly you sanction
All the violence that we face
You distort the Bible's words
To support your platitudes
But bigotry is not
A very Christian attitude

Now as for reformation
I have very little hope
But if you think it can be done
Go and tell it to the Pope
'Cause the clergy and parishioners
Who are still inside the closet
Support this persecution

music & lyrics © Ron Romanovsky
Published by Bodacious Music (ASCAP)

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Tango Indigesto

In a Mexican restaurant I waited for you
For an hour I waited and anticipated
A fabulous dinner for two
You suggested a booth in the dark
"How romantic" I thought
"I'm sorry" you told me
Then looked at me coldly
Thank heaven the salsa was hot!
"Well, how 'bout a drink?" you asked
I said, "That would be fine"
Then I said, "Cut the drama"
As the band played "La Bamba"
For the seventeenth time

And the mariachis played
And the plastic palm trees swayed
And the turquoise statue of Mary was turning to blue
You were trashing our relationship
As I choked on a nacho chip
You told me I'd have to get used to a life without you

Then the waiter came over to us
With cocktails for two
And all I could think as he set down my drink
Was that I'd like to dump it on you
You proceeded to twist the knife
Or that's how it seemed
As I sipped my gazpacho
You said, "You're not macho enough
For the man of my dreams"
What the hell was I doing there
With my heart on my sleeve?
He was being so rude
But right then the food came
And I couldn't leave

And the mariachis played
And the plastic palm trees swayed
And the turquoise statue of Mary was turning to blue
You were slashing our relationship
With each margarita sip
But I couldn't begin to imagine a life without you
We ate dinner in silence then
And I felt like a wreck
Then halfway through my enchilda
I got the bravado to ask for the check
"Well I think I should leave" said I
"I don't want any scenes
It's too late for questions
I've got indigestion
And not just from eating the beans"
"What did you expect" I said
"Yes of course I am hurt
No, don't try to console me
You've got guacamole all over your shirt"

And the mariachis played
And the plastic palm trees swayed
And the turquoise statue of Mary was turning to blue
Cashing in our relationship
I felt a smile return to my lips
As I saw a new life before me, a life without you

Then I pushed away my tortilla
Got up and said, "Guess I'll see ya"
'Cause I saw a life that was freer
A life without you!

music & lyrics © Ron Romanovsky
Published by Bodacious Music (ASCAP)

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Closing Chapter

It's not a simple case of breaking up
One chapter's closed, another has begun
Now I try to learn to call you my ex-lover
But how do you ex-love someone?

Are you a friend or foe or just a ghost?
I see the hurt so deep within your eyes
But the love runs deep as the river of our sorrow
With currents just as strong as family ties

All the men I've ever loved
Remain a part of me for good
I can't let them go completely
Even when my heart knows I should

Don't think it's easy for me
To watch our hopes turn to shattered dreams
It takes time to sincerely say goodbye
And it takes time for dreams to die

But I won't forget the way you held me tight
Not even if we're ever far apart
And the love we lost will in time be rediscovered
In another corner of the heart

All the men I've ever loved
Remain a part of me for good
I can't let them go completely
Even when my heart knows I should

music & lyrics © Ron Romanovsky
Published by Bodacious Music (ASCAP)

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No False Hope

Why are the papers full of gloom?
Predicting a future of darkness and doom
There's no denying many have died
Lives have been lost, tears have been cried
And there's so much pain and so little relief
That it's hard to feel hope in our moment of grief
But if that's what it takes to help someone live
Then we have a lot we can give

Chorus:
Because there's no such thing as false hope
There's no dream that isn't real
No such thing as false hope
No one can say what the future will reveal
If we believe in our hearts that it's true
Surely our hope will pull us through

Don't listen in to the TV scare
It only weakens you with despair
They paint a portrait full of doubt
By leaving the long-term survivors out
And as a result, how many are gone
Because their hope was denied for too long?
And if that's what it takes to help someone live
Then we have a lot we can give

(Chorus)

Hope is on the horizon
Help is on the way
Love will pull us through another day

Hope is the key that unlocks the mind
Lightens the burden or leaves it behind
And if that's what it takes to help someone live
Then we have a lot we can give

(Chorus)

Hope is on the horizon
Help is on the way
Love will pull us through another day

music & lyrics © Ron Romanovsky
Published by Bodacious Music (ASCAP)

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