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Poem: Stolen


When I was a child around 10 years old I was sexually assaulted. I made a choice many years ago to stop treating it as a dirty secret. Although it had devastating impacts on my self-esteem, it created the man I am today. In the media recently there has been discussions of rape and sexual assault. In my case I was raped by a female (she was our babysitter) over a long period of time. In my view, society has a double standard when it comes to males and rape. The first time I told an adult about the assault, they asked me if the girl was hot; that shut me down for over 20 years. Feel to heal and tell to get well.


Soft skin, curious eyes, tender touch

Wanting love; bird with a broken wing

Searching, craving, longing

Easter egg in a room of hammers

Salmon eggs in a river with no water

Quenching for tenderness in a house of fists

You saw me quivering

Stillness of nighttime

Taking hand in darkness

Walking to room with shadows

Secrets, frightened, shame

Tomorrows never the same

Couldn’t fly

Legs strong, wing broken

Covered in oil, eagle watching

Couldn’t shake

Desperate for love; No superheroes

Many sons; same story

No words, many tears

Childhood stolen, many “sorry’s”

Lost child, rainy nights

Aching, lonely, crying

Many ravens; more regrets

Hourglass turned over, you walked away

Innocence stolen

Boys shame, mothers pain, father covers face

Hand slips away


Carl Meadows,

November 22, 2009

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I was born in Prince Rupert, BC and I grew up in Port Coquitlam, BC within metro Vancouver. I was a non-conventional boy winning awards for choreography, dance, and led many school performance numbers before grade 6. I also competed as a figure skater and was notorious for doing cart wheels on the ice. I was bullied all through my school years and ended up going to 3 different High Schools and didn't graduate as a result. This was the era of no Gay Rights in Canada. I struggled with visibility, identity and self-esteem. I am one of the lucky survivors as most of my friends died of AIDS or committed suicide. I graduated as a Registered Nurse in 1993 and it was the proudest achievement in my life. It taught me that despite hardships, I could overcome insurmountable challenges. I am committed to making the world more compassionate and doing my part by celebrating LGBTQ contributions to the world. In 2014 I responded to a call to sponsor two Syrian Gay refugees to come to Canada. This launched the beginning of a national Charity called the Rainbow Foundation of Hope. I was the founding President. n my professional life, I am a Registered Nurse and a Healthcare Executive. I live with my husband and our dog Rocky in Penticton BC

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