Lovely. You made me think of an experience I had 30 years ago as a young man living in Berlin. I was closeted except to a select few people, and I had had no real relationships.

I was on the subway late one night, I can’t even remember why, and I was alone in the car except for one other young guy about my own age. He was sleeping, and his head was lolling. And he was the most beautiful person I had ever seen in my entire life.

The train jerked to a stop at a station, his eyes opened and met mine from all the way across the car. He smiled a smile that had to be one of recognition.

He stood up and walked out at the next stop.

I wasn’t brave enough then to do anything, but I made up my mind that I would have to be.

A lifetime later and two long-term lovers later, I can still close my eyes and see his face.

Writer. Runner. Marine. Airman. Former LGBTQ and HIV activist. Former ActUpNY and Queer Nation. Polyglot. Middle-aged, uppity faggot.