I wish to explode the myth of the man who preys on youngsters.
You know who I mean-the dirty old man, the one in the Mac, the monster who hands out sweeties by the school gate, that sinister figure of perversion.
The law protects us -the adolescents of today, the men of the future. It overprotects us from the advances of adults, and attempts to separate our worlds completely and create a barrier: age. Although that is as arbitrary as the geographical boundaries man has imposed on nature.
I have a confession to make, but it doesn’t embarrass me in the slightest. If people who desire and love those who are much younger are called "the corrupters of youth," then I am no less a "corrupter of adults."
And I know, as you do, that I’m not the only one.
When I used to dream about what my lover would be like, at that age when we become aware of desires, I imagined him as solid as an oak. He’d have grey hair, strong gentle hands, a voice tempered by wisdom, and the charming lines upon his face would be for me proof that he had experience of life.
I found the man, and in him met a father, lover, teacher. And it surprised me to discover in his eyes too the fear created by that myth of the dirty old man.
I discovered his approach to me was faltering, and toll of being judged by others had left him vulnerable. More than once the spectre of doubt crossed his face as he asked himself whether, although we loved each other sincerely, we ought to be doing this.
Now I begin to understand that years and years of prejudice had bruised his heart.
As for me, I’m young and not afraid, nor do I believe in stereotypes, or want to be ’sensible,’ or think that waiting for another birthday will make me any better prepared to love. And to those adults who call my love dirty, or dare to judge what they know nothing of, I challenge them to acknowledge what will still remain twenty years from now. I will be a fully-grown man, and my lover will have started to grow old. Then it will be my turn to look after him, treating him with the care and protection he gives me now. I challenge them to come back then and say that what we have is not love, or show me any sign that I let myself be corrupted as a youth.
Who corrupts whom?
Who takes advantage of who?
Who seduces who?
|My lover and I are symbiotic, we two are one. For us love isn’t a business deal, it’s sharing. I lack his experience, his calm, his wisdom; he lacks my energy, my courage, my verve.
Together we are perfect, and each hour we spend in each other’s arms defeats the monster that is Prejudice. We close our door, and shut out that a society that is foolish and moralising.
So at the end, as at the start, my message is:
LOVE IS BLIND TO AGE.
(Translated by Al)