NO UNION MORE PROFOUND – a celebration of human rights
Letters from Little Rock
By Nickole Brown & Jessica Jacobs | July 2, 2015 in Oxford American
The poets Nickole Brown and Jessica Jacobs were married in California in October of 2013. Following the Supreme Court’s marriage equality ruling, they exchanged a series of letters from their home in Little Rock. Nickole begins:
Some images I want to bless in clear water and hold up to the light. Like my sister, nearly six years ago now, sitting up during a contraction to touch the crown of her son not yet born. Or my peonies in Kentucky—one June, I cut every single stalk and brought the armload inside, blooms big as grapefruit, blasting open with black ants.
This past Friday, you ran back inside, hollering to come quick. I knew from your tone to hurry, and from the sound of it, I thought you wanted to show me something beautiful that wouldn’t last. I imagined the summer’s first Praying Mantis, how you would point to it on the fence, how it would cock its alien head back at us.
Instead, you were in the kitchen, pointing to your computer. At first, I was disappointed, expecting some silly thing online, some random status update or video of a baby goat making friends with a bird. But then, I looked at what you had pulled up for me, a headline I thought I’d never see in this lifetime: “Gay Marriage Upheld by Supreme Court in Close Ruling.”
Here then is the image I want to keep: that exact look on your face, right before you began to cry. My Jessica, my Jess, my wife—you were already late for an appointment, but we had to stop. This time was ours; it belonged to us. We held each other then, softly weeping into each other’s arms.
We are shaped by the era and the family into which we are born, but what can be a greater act of self-definition than making you my wife, my chosen family? Continue reading