Poetry
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Poem: They came in the night

In 2010 my husband and I, took our 3 nieces to Berlin and visited Sachsenhausen death camp where over 6000 Gays were killed. Under article 175 of the penal code they were arrested by the SS. The irony, is the niece that grabbed my hand and said; “uncle it will be ok” while I was sobbing, came out of the closet as lesbian years later. I will never forget.

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They came in the night

As I walked thought the gates of this horrible place

Wondering how many like me had marched, on their untimely fait

As the SS came, sweeping homes in the night

To take gays away to an unknown site

A place far away, so cold and grey

When lovers are separated so quickly, what could they say?

Could love be such a crime that you would murder for the third Reich?

As hands crossed hands, and eyes met eyes

Station Z became the final stop for those who refused to lie

As my feet walked along the camp of others destiny

How many before me had given up their dreams of hope and liberty

Sitting night by night, day by day

Listing to the screams and the tears of other gays

Do I run far away, or be shot while I stay

Do I hang by my wrist or die in the clay,

The brickyards are harsh and three months is the promise

But the lie they don’t tell, is that it ends in blood, bullets and darkness

The loneliness would be worse than the branding

The heartache would kill you more than anything I could imagine

As I walked through the gates and saw the memorial plaque,

It was hard to walk on, without turning my back

the Homosexual spirits of Sachsenhausen continue to endeavor

With my promise secured to forget, but never

as I walked past the gates of this horrible place

their voices must live on today and forever,

as liberty for them came all but too late

Carl Meadows Jr,

September 12, 2010

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I was born June 13, 1967. I was raised in the town of 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 from High School 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 am a prolific Poet. I graduated as a Registered Nurse in 1993 and it was one of the proudest achievements in my lifetime as it defied all those folks who said I wasn't enough. 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 LGBT contributions to the world. Every year my husband and I host a Fall Gala for 'Out in Schools' called the 'Carl and Les Fall Gala. Part of this vision is to make sure every student in BC has the opportunity to see their self worth through LGBTQ visibility, support and action to make the world safe for everyone. I am President for the Foundation of Hope whose vision is "a world where LGBT+ refugees can live safely and be themselves". We also support a Film Series at the Vancouver Queer Film Festival called "Migrant Voices" that raises awareness of issues surrounding Refugees, Immigrants, Asylum seekers and Migrants. In my professional life, I am a Registered Nurse and a Health Services Administrator in Health Care. I live with my husband and our dog Ted.

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