“We Saw Each Other” © 2011 Judy Grahn

We held the first all-women’s dance of our west coast Gay Women’s Liberation movement in Berkeley in 1970, in a very plain green-walled rented, or maybe donated, hall. Several dyke volunteers guarded the doors to make sure men stayed away. All-women’s dances were happening in 1970 in New York and Boston as well, and perhaps other places, indicating that activist lesbians were on a similar energy beam and had moved outside the bar scenes. The guarded, possessive quality of typical gay bar life fell away for a while; we connected with each other in an eroticism of promises and power. A communal erotic and rebellious beat took hold of us; we began to dance with whoever was there, not as a romantic arrangement, but as a flirtatious soaking up and spreading of a new exhilarating vibrational rate. As I remember these were not couple dances, more geometric figures—four, five-sided, or circular—and the dancing was vigorous, interactive. In that first rush of sexual solidarity, we saw each other as a group of warriors, Gay Women’s Liberation’s handsome warriors. We saw each other, and in that first bursting we liked what we saw.

Having been told so often, so many ways, how ugly we lesbians were—how plain how old-maidish how “no man would want you” how criminal, unwomanly, undesirable, dishonorable, disorderly, filthy, manhating, whorish, inhuman, insanely jealous, and just yucky we were in our very existence, we were astonished to discover our collective beauty.  I was not the only one to experience ecstatic exuberance and all-encompassing heart-opening desire at the women’s dances and to be swept up in a river of sheer beauty: sexy, powerful, gorgeous, lip-swelling hair-shaking spit-flowing eye-flashing, hip-rotating, knee twisting, thigh pumping, pheromone coursing, fingers expressing, sultry spicy sweat smelling complexly exhilarating female potentiality.  We raised up storms of change as we stomped the floor with our dancing, not because we were dancing, but because our dancing celebrated our commitment to each other.

The dancing was more about our eyes meeting than about touching, our arms and hips flashing out really big promises. Oxytocin, that hormonal mama love drug, flew everywhere. Aesthetics begins with erotic love, and now, because we had a viable movement, we had an aesthetic: we had beauty and courage and loyalty toward each other and toward ourselves. We had hot but somewhat undifferentiated desire that seemed to start as a hunger in our blood, a pulse-pain in our hearts—and what was it for, what was it for, what were we going to do with it? That was our question.

Our solidarity was not an instant panacea, would not immediately restore us to full human status, make us citizens, help us understand our differences, turn us into nice people. But our solidarity and respect for each other was the strongest weapon we, or anyone, could have, and while it lasted we would use it to its fullest advantage. We could see qualities we seemed to have in common and begin to associate them with what we meant by “dyke,” like our willingness to be out in public with our militant lesbian poetry and clothes and postures and attitudes, and like the idealism that shone from our faces, and the honest, plain-spokenness of our speech, and our willingness to fight for justice. Even now those of us still acting as “activists” trust each other’s word know we can call on each other in certain kinds of crises and know we will show up.

This loyalty, I think, spread into the women’s movement as a whole, where women had bumped into the long-standing, entrenched misconception about female friendship being impossible. We heard a story about two straight women, mothers and ex-wives of leftist men, who had been together in a consciousness raising group and had decided to live together. They moved into the same house, sharing the same kitchen. Within days they were fighting, to the point, the story went, that they were out on the street screaming into each other’s faces, and pulling each other’s hair. And splitting up. This was the classic stereotype about women at the time—that we could never be friends with each other. Women were believed to be untrustworthy: jealous of each other, since all women were understood to be rivals for perpetually desirable men, or rivals for fame, “beauty” or success of any kind. This social disconnection is completely dangerous, as disconnected women will turn away when one of them is in trouble with a man or group of men—and by extension is in any kind of trouble—and will say, fearfully, cold-heartedly, mercilessly, ‘she must have brought it on herself.’

Our dyke networks in general had couple relationships but very free sexual interactions outside of these commitments. Perhaps I just wasn’t looking or didn’t go to the bars enough, but I didn’t see as much of that isolated couple-lockstep sexual jealousy among us as activist lesbians. The possessive jealousy, so typical of isolated and frightened lesbian couples, vaporized for awhile in the new openness. We became radiantly eroticized, toward all of us, and a sort of blanket of love permeated the air.  Out of this we committed to take risks for each other, to show up and put lives on the line. We had taken risks in other parts of the earlier, broader movement for civil rights and ending the war, but not with this same erotic suffusion. Now, this social loyalty to other lesbians, and by extension to women in general, impacted us very personally; we valued each other more than we had and thus valued ourselves more too. As female beings. This created loyalty to each other as lesbians and as women, which many of us had never experienced. As Laura Brown put it, “I love that we were making it up, being as strong as you could be, and as kind, and as loving as you could be. We had an ethic that love would make each other stronger…”

Over the next few years after 1970, this militant lover-love spread out experientially to bisexual and straight women in a diffused sort of way and produced a new loyalty among women. Women who fell in love with each other even for a short time or even in a virtually physical way—you know, dreams, fantasies, noticing their own attraction to a woman in a way that includes her breasts and lips but that isn’t competitive, and so being open to the possibility of physical sexual relationships even if never acted upon—women who now knew what it was or might be like to be intimate with another woman, and to be reflected positively in another woman’s eyes. This helped them love themselves more and it helped them understand each other empathically. As this love spread across many layers of society, women became more capable of female friendships and loyalties.

In the third year of our dyke revolution, in one section of my fifteen-page poem “A Woman Is Talking to Death,” I tried to capture this sense of lesbian love as a caring about other women. The section called “A Mock Interrogation” has these lines:

Have you ever held hands with a woman?
 
 
 
Yes, many times—women about to deliver, women about to
 
have breasts removed, wombs removed, miscarriages, women
 
having epileptic fits, having asthma, cancer, women having
 
breast bone marrow sucked out of them by nervous or in-
 
different interns, women with heart conditions, who were
 
vomiting, overdosed, depressed, drunk, lonely to the point
 
of extinction: women who had been run over, beaten up.
 
deserted. starved. women who had been bitten by rats; and
 
women who were happy, who were celebrating, who were
 
dancing with me in large circles or alone, women who were
 
climbing mountains or up and down walls, or trucks or roofs
 
and needed a boost up, or I did; women who simply wanted
 
to hold my hand because they liked me, some women who
 
wanted to hold my hand because they liked me better than
 
anyone.
 
(from The Judy Grahn Reader. Aunt Lute Books. ©2009)

I set this poetic scene in my work and life situations, as well as in the movement as I experienced it. For me the love I felt for my comrade dyke/lovers never ended. Still today, women from that tumultuous era, even those with whom I had serious difficulties—I still love them. Seeing them again after forty years, again my insides melt. Interviewing any one of them, I notice the appealing slant of her cheekbone, the brightness of her eyes, the cocky turn of her head. This isn’t about sex; I had sex with very few of them. Though maybe it mattered that the permission was there, that we might have sex. Recently and somewhat mischievously I asked Pat Jackson, not having seen her for thirty-five years, not having ever had sex with her or even cuddled all night with her, if she had ever loved me. She looked at the wall, looked at the table, looked at the wall again. “Love you!” she said. “Love you?” another pause. She fixed brilliant blue eyes on me. “I would die for you.”

________________

April 2011

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Community Forum

  1. Bev Jo says:

    Thank you so much for this! I only just found this site. I remember finding you, Judy, when your Gay Women’s Liberation meetings alternated between your and Wendy’s place in SF, and Alice and Carol’s place in Berkeley. It was 1970, I was 19, and I went to everything that I could find in our new community. I remember so many dances at houses and halls, which was a great alternative to the bars. You described it beautifully. It was magic. A dream come true — the power and magnificence of Lesbians finding each other at last.

    I keep reading myths about our special time of Radical Lesbian Feminism from the early Seventies and I keep trying to counter that and tell the true stories.

    I hope you continue. I missed your events, and would like to not miss more, and also to participate since I also write of those times.

    • Judy Grahn says:

      Thanks Bev Jo,
      I too have read things about us that astounded me–that we were all white middle or upper middle class,
      that we were spoiled brats opting out of responsibility, that all we cared about was sex, that we were
      virtually asexual and drab….is that the kind of uninformed stuff you have been reading too? One reason for doing this writing is to try to tell a more true story, to catch even a little bit of what it was like–i assume you have that motive in your own writing. Where can we see your writing, by the way?

      • Bev Jo says:

        It almost seems like a deliberate re-writing of our history. (I do believe that some of it is, and lies repeated enough are believed — it’s an old right wing technique.) Anyone who wants to can see the old photos and read the writings from that time, which proves what I remember our magnificent Lesbian Feminist movement to be: Primarily working class Lesbians, with some of the the originators of our culture being Lesbians who are/were oppressed by racism. Not “spoiled brats,” but so courageous and strong, with many having gone through the hell of being disowned by families, incarcerated in mental hospitals for being Lesbian girls still owned by families, attacked, fired, evicted, harassed, etc. It was not a privileged movement.

        Too sexual or asexual?!! Well, I remember it being a very passionate time, which goes along with being a loving people — not the disconnect later pushed by the porn industry. Drab? I always think that the male-defined “femininity” which is pushed on us in patriarchy is mind-numbingly bland and mainstream. I thought our Dykey community was beautiful, original, creative — just a dream come true. I loved the look that is so put down now. I felt I belonged for the first time.

        The myths I’ve heard were those you named, but also that Butches were horribly oppressed and driven out. I know Lesbians who were barely born then who insist that myth is true, even when I tell them that I was part of the community from 1970 so I know and they weren’t here! I ask them to stop re-writing our history. Their myth erases Butch presence. I remember Butches being a big part of who CREATED our movement and culture, and were the writers, thinkers, theorists, poets, musicians, song-writers, photographers, etc. YOU know! I name you and Pat Parker and others in case they need proof.

        In comparison, I think the Lesbian communities I’m in today is far more Butch-hating and harassing (I hear anti-Butch comments regularly, even made about Fems who look a little Dykey!)

        Yes, I do keep trying to tell women of all ages what we had then and what we’ve lost — and what we could get back. I also try to keep the spirit of equality going. I’m seeing blog and facebook arguments among “radical feminists” in which they are trying to explore some of the same politics that we worked out forty years ago, as if that work hasn’t been done and those issues solve. (I always say that those who don’t know history are condemned to repeat it.) I recently wrote an article that was a rebuttal to a statement against
        “intersectionality,” which wasn’t even a term that any Lesbian Feminist I’ve known ever heard of. That’s at my blog, along with parts of my/our book, Dykes-Loving-Dykes, which we’re updating, and other articles and poetry.

        http://bevjoradicallesbian.wordpress.com/

        Thank you for keeping our Lesbian spirit and history alive!

        Bev

  2. Martha Shelley says:

    This post brought me to tears, remembering those times. I wonder if any younger women are having those experiences–wonder especially what is happening for the generation propagandized to say, “I’m not a feminist, but (I believe in equal pay, or something namby-pamby like that).”

    • Judy Grahn says:

      I would guess some of them are getting into the Occupy Wall Street et al movement, starting their
      own process of radicalization on the street…

  3. joey brite says:

    Very nice to see that you are writing of this period of time and about the bay area. I’m assuming it’s mainly the east bay that you’re speaking of, or does it include equal attention to the other side of the ‘pond’? I’m asking because as I was coming out in ’71 at 16 years young and in southern California, it would be 5 years later that I came to the bay area as a performer and into the lesbian music scene, and most of “the buzz” seemed to be happening in Oakland and Berkeley. For this outsider, the only contact with lesbians (outside the thriving bar scenes) in San Francisco was either at The Full Moon Coffeehouse or The Women’s Bookstore. But the lesbians who frequented these havens pretty much stayed in SF, and the lesbians living in the east bay seemed to stay in the east bay. The cultures – and therefore the politics – that were developing were clearly very different. And, they still are. BART helped the divide a little, but the east bay always seemed to have a completely different culture and vibe and I’m wondering if this is explored in your work as a subject. Really looking forward to the work you’re producing!

    • Judy says:

      Thanks Joey.
      My lover at the time, Wendy Cadden and I started out on Lexington Street in the Mission District in SF. We co-founded the Women’s Press Collective there, then within a couple of years we were living in a lesbian household in Oakland, and moved the press into the back of ICI: A Woman’s Place bookstore.
      What do you think are the biggest differences between lesbian culture as it developed in SF, and the East Bay? (I have my own ideas but would love to hear yours).
      Judy

  4. Iris Crider says:

    When I posted my first comment, I didn’t think it went through. In fact got an alert that it hadn’t. So, apologize for sending two comments (with a third) which could be either a contradiction in terms or simply too much.

  5. Iris Crider says:

    Wish I could come to your time tomorrow but had made a commitment otherwise some time ago.
    Back when I was using my first name as my first name, we were friends. You and Wendy–me and Louise, then Bonnie and on and on. Remember..we worked in the Women’s Press Collective.
    Wishing you all the best and with love.

    (Brenda) Iris

  6. Jewels (Joyce) Marcus says:

    I moved from New Jersey (dropping out of Fairleigh Dickenson when they had a Lesbian “witch” hunt and tossed out some women from the dorms) and landed in the Bay Area in 1974. By 1976 I had happily ensconsed myself in the beginnings of the “army of lovers who could never be defeated.” I’ll never forget walking into my first Lesbian Bar, but didn’t remember too much after I arrived and had a few drinks. It was the Women on Wheels concert which really rocked my world. An entire large theatre filled with Lesbian of every kind and women on the stage singing about OUR lives and OUR loves. After being so afraid to be myself in world that hated me and wanted to hurt me, I was finally safe and free and home.

    • Judy says:

      Yes, that was a great concert series wasn’t it. Do you recall where it was held and who was on stage singing?
      Judy

  7. Nyla Dartt says:

    Preparing the “Woman to Woman” poetry manuscript on the mimeograph machine, almost page by page, in an apartment in San Franciso, circa 1971, was new and strange and lovely. We were a collective of women, Jeri, Sandy, Joan and I, working together to change the world. The manuscript, made of lines of poetry on one page interspersed with thin tissue paper, was a thing of beauty and art. And as we worked together we learned skills we had never learned before, each of us with a new perspective on ourselves, increasing our confidence more than any educational institution ever had. We were the MotherLode Collective; we produced a newspaper, and were raising our children together. But we also learned to love the power of making poetry and things of beauty.

    The poems, word by word, woke me up. Made me breathe! And then there was more. I could go over the long list of the events of that era. One by one they are blazoned in my brain. I see the women, in my mind, even now, today. A long distance and time away from the woman I was then. I hear the cadence of the poetry readings. I remember the times, especially, where my stomach dropped, just as my jaw, at the power of meaning brought home to my heart.

    I grew up through the writing of that era. I learned about the world by reading every feminist book I could, and then talking talking talking, hugging, and living with among and shoulder to shoulder with women in every configuration imaginable–room mate, lover-friend and companion. Every single woman I met had a hand in my development, helped me grow and gave me support, teaching me what all my teachers, parents had failed to do. When I saw myself through other women, saw them “see” me, they taught me to love.

    From Nyla

    • Judy says:

      So beautifully said, Nyla. I have talked to Sandy some about the Motherlode collective. You all must have come to Lexington Street to help Wendy Cadden and I collate “Woman to Woman”–which had such marvelous graphics on the onionskin and purple pages for the poems. i hope you write up some of your memories and submit them to Aunt Lute, whose staff will be choosing accounts as part of a future panel with me.
      The meeting yesterday at Open House was so good, so many women told their own stories.
      all best to you
      Judy

  8. Iris Crider says:

    Hi Judy. I was there then too. Then, my first name was Brenda. I am happy to be knowing that I will come to see and hear you on the 10th. Hopefully, we will recognize each other.
    Those dances were something else! To me, all good.

    • Judy says:

      Brenda/Iris,
      I think of you so often, and of those days. Sorry you couldn’t come to Open House yesterday, it was grand, a full house of splendid old-timers and some closely listening young ones.
      There will be more, another event is coming in the Fall.
      love Judy

  9. Grace Harwood says:

    Thank you for your thoughts, Judy. BTW, I have a tape of us reading with Diane Wakoski at SF State. Let me know if you want to see it. Or check in with the Poetry Center; certainly they have it. As to writing about those times, I’ll give it a thought. Best to you, glh

  10. Grace Harwood says:

    One of the biggest problems with the community during the 70s was the simple fact that it was so bar-oriented. For those of us struggling against addiction, this was a huge huge problem; there was a parallel culture of dykes who were more based in common work (law office dykes, for example) or political work (around the Institute for the Study of Non-Violence/AIUSA and Friends Service Committee). We were never actually included in The Community in many ways. I remember, for example, one performance in Palo Alto (at a bar, of course) where Lily Tomlin opened for Cris Williamson, mid-1970s, and was booed because the audience felt she wasn’t “dykey” enough. She said she wasn’t going to do that. The Community of East Bay dykes of course was a very good thing for many of us in some ways. I don’t mean to say it wasn’t. But the whole thing was very much more complex than is often discussed.

    • Judy says:

      Yes, I totally agree, Grace, this is a complicated story-even my version of it gets complex. The bar culture was definitely a problem, and is one reason we held all-women’s dances in non-bar spaces and so treasured the bookstores that encouraged meetings. But not until AA meetings really took hold were LGBT people able to break free of the alcoholic chain. And then, the women-owned bars like Maude’s closed for lack of customers. Why were lesbians in Palo Alto booing Lily Tomlin? They wanted her to be a more public lesbian? Have you written about those times?

  11. Diane Solis says:

    I read these posts and comments to learn–to pray, in a way, if that makes any sense, to Be. In 2005 my life-partner died. We were not out until her illness and passing that year. I am, in many respects, still coming home to me. I have so much catching up to do. This is a good place, a sacred space on the net to gain awareness, learning about the history from Judy’s posts, which is my heritage, as truly as that from my Native American and European forebears. My new life-partner, who has always been out, and I have created a sacred space to Be in our home, beyond that with our family and friends, beyond that, I have my feet in so many worlds culturally, socially, in so many ways. I wonder if I can ever catch up. This is a good place to try. I’m grateful you are all here.

    Thank you, peace,
    Diane

    • Judy says:

      Thanks for your comment Diane,
      To me, community connection has always been a life-saver–along with a capacity to keep moving.
      And, of course, books…

  12. Marcy Sheiner says:

    Reading this I feel connected to it even tho I was on the East Coast, doing a New York version, or my own version, dipping in and out of consciousness raising groups, street theater, support groups, workshops… and I remember reading Judy Grahn, one of the hundreds (?) of poets and writers who created the women’s movement. I loved and still love how literary the movement was and is. I’m looking forward to seeing Grahn’s performances in the Bay Area.

    • Judy says:

      I think there have been some good collections showing the range of poetry that poured out of this and the more mainstream feminist movements.Recently Honor Moore edited one, Poems of the Women’s Movement. my favorite from the old times was Rising Tides. Elly Bulkin and Joan Larkin edited Lesbian Poetry in the early eighties.And I am just blown away by Aunt Lute’s double volume of American women’s writings.

  13. D'vorah Grenn says:

    What a compelling, eye-opening, sensual, thick description of the times and your presence — powerful recollections – liberating and inspiring for anyone who reads your words. When I think how much time I wasted, walking through my life in a coma from ’75 to ’91…

  14. Atty Lennox says:

    Wow. It must have been incredibly powerful for women to gather in this way- to see each other and reflect one another. I wonder if the group’s power was heightened in these first meetings in their solidarity and intention. I can imagine that it must have been very moving for the female warriors who had been fighting independently for years to come together for the first time and danced together. I would love to know more of the details of these meetings. What were the implications of coming together in this informal and sacred way? For a younger woman just beginning to experience the immensely empowering and transformative potential of women-only space that has feminist values, I wonder what was it that instigated the first meetings of this movement in the 1970s? What made women start coming together in this way to express themselves physically, creatively and authentically? From Judy’s writing I can feel the provocative, inspiring nature of this movement in my belly.

    • Marcy Sheiner says:

      Atty Lennox: You ask what instigated the first meetings in the 1970s. For me it was dissatisfaction with my life as a housewife in suburbia, and reading The Feminine Mystique, and finally separating from my husband. I read something about Consciousness Raising groups and got myself over to one right quick! After that it was one one glorious connection after another.

  15. Emily Montan says:

    Amazon Autumn was an annual conference for women identified women and Saturday night was the big dance. I attended my first one at Fairleigh Dickinson in 1974 (held in the Fall of course!) The last one I attended was at Livingston College (part of Rutgers University). The workshop sessions were extensive and ranged from racism to S&M in the lesbian community.

  16. suu feathers says:

    Wow Judy..

    Can’t wait for the more that is to come.

    As with Annette, one of the things that struck me was the idea that women were supposed to fight and compete with one another. It isn’t the idea of it that surprised me, (I know the idea and reality of it all to well), but the flash of lightening that seared thru my heart on reading it ‘spoken’ so forthrightly in your piece. The pure delight I always feel to encounter a person, people, art, writing, poetry, a place where women will openly acknowledge the expectation & turn to laugh in it’s face by celebrating our luscious connections instead.

    Thank you!
    And as promised…here’s the link to my blog about celebrating our luscious & erotically charged, fleeting & supportive relationship with Nature, the seen & unseen world, debunking the myth that Nature is ‘untrustworthy’ & that we should compete with It (I hope)… in my simple style…

    http://followingthetrailoflife.blogspot.com/

    blessings,
    ~suu

  17. Jewelle Gomez says:

    It is so wonderful to find Judy out here in cyberspace…where all good dykes should be!!! The communication between generations is crucial to the social good…which we used to call revolution.

  18. Carolyn Cooke says:

    Judy, What a find this blog is! Such live writing. So close to the heart of everything.

  19. Patricia Jackson says:

    Yes, we are still many extraordinary dykes living lives with stories not ordinarily told. In those dyke days of the ‘70s with our energized spirit, we believed we could do anything. We continue to survive on our own strengths alone, or maybe unite with a lover. We build circles of friends and allies and take our places within communities. We still march, protest, and strive to bring a better world for everyone.
    As another commentor said here Judy, may you memoir light the torch once more!

  20. Marial Dreamwalker says:

    Yes! I was just a teenager in 1976-78/San Francisco, but I hung out at Old Wives Tales, bookstore with the older dykes. I loved to be around the energy and sit on the floor for hours reading and dreaming about someday being with a woman. As a young Latina woman in those days, this was not an option. I also spent time with several Lesbian musicians and went to the coffee houses to listen to artists like, Margie Adams, Chris Williams and so many more. I consider myself very blessed to have spent time in this women-positive space at a younger age. Wonderful memories!

  21. Susan Abbott says:

    Yes! We did like what we saw of the beautiful and handsome amazons at the time. I was I Boston in 1973 and the Charles Street meetingghouse and the Cambridge Women,s Center and a huge women’s spirituality conference was a heady environment. Moved to SF in 1976 and went to Full Moon Coffeehouse right off the bat. I remember readibg Edward the Dyke and A Woman Is Talking to Death, seeing you rad them someplace during that time. I’ve been working on a short video retrospective from photos of my life as I approach a mileston 60th b~day this month. There’s photos of Artemis Society and Old Wives Tales that bring a pain to my heart as such places hardly exist anymore. Miss that. I look

    • Judy says:

      Happy birthday Susan,

      Thanks for your “thumbnail sketch” of the times. What will you do with your video retrospective–(I’m fishing here) We would love a chance to post a couple of those great photos on this site!

  22. Marial Dreamwalker says:

    Powerful and moving write, Judy. I was moved to fire and to tears. It saddens me that this fear is still very much alive among Lesbians today. We need another revolution and your words are the fire that will strike a rememberance of the power and transforming fire that ignites when women are not afraid to love each other. Thank You.

    • Judy says:

      Hi Marial,
      I’m sorry to hear that some women, lots of women, remain afraid to love other women. Yet that solidarity of loyalty, in my experience, is often the most powerful thing we have to protect ourselves, and to envision positive changes. I know you agree–besides writing, what can we do?

      • Marial Dreamwalker says:

        Hi Judy,

        I think that writing, art, and music that promotes a powerful model of the Divine Feminine that illustrates the full spectrum of women’s psychological and spiritual make-up will give women a greater capacity for loving, acceptance and forgiveness. As well as creating a more compasionate community where women can be supportive and in alliance with each other, instead of being in competition for love, partnership and resources. I know there are many women working ardently on this together, and this gives me hope. Yet I become disheartened when I come across 50 year old women gossiping and spreading rumors about each other in hopes of trying to “get the girl.” It is so damaging and it hurts my heart to see this.

  23. Annette Wagner says:

    Hey Judy,
    In reading this, I was surprised again by the memories of how women were supposed to hate each other, that we were jealous of each other because we were seen as competing. I know that thread is still there for some women, but it seems so far away from me now. I am sure one reason for that is the work you all did to unweave that thread.

    And perhaps because with experience I have learned that my heart sisters are the ones who are there for me regardless of what roller coaster ride I happen to be on.

    thank you for sharing all this,
    love,
    Annette

  24. Henri says:

    Hi Judy, Great to see you are writing this memoir of a time that was exciting and new, where women met, flirted, fell apart or together, were free to express themselves through dancing and those romantic interludes at the bar or a dark table or at a game of pool. All gone now as far as I know. I missed the beginning, but managed to experience some in the 80′s before it all disappeared.
    Henri

  25. Emily Montan says:

    What a great description. I was riveted. It reminds me of the dances I attended in NJ at Amazon Autumn and Passages in Washington, DC – also of the struggles that were universal for sister warriors and lovers at that time. Thank you Judy.

    • Judy says:

      Hi Emily,

      I’m so curious now, i never have heard of Amazon Autumn in New Jersey–what year was that? Passages sounds familiar, was that a bookstore? but big enough for dances. It was so great when women had so much space available, and of course space was so much more affordable then.

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