Villanelle on a Queer Coach


men's lacrosse coach Kyle Hawkins watches the campers at his lacrosse camp. Hawkins has been coping with the problems of being the nation's first openly gay male coach on the collegiate level.  

                                                                                   —Photo caption, AOL News


What next for a homeland we once held dear,

What more for the red-state folks to endure

Now that Coach Hawkins has come out as queer?


It’s bad enough that gay marriage is here –

How can marriage for straight folks endure

In a homeland even perverts hold dear?


How’d you like your son, a star, to appear

On that lacrosse field, where jocks should be pure,

Now Coach is a magnet for players who’re queer?


Think of the locker room as a place to leer

At young men’s gear – it’s too much to endure:

Straight players whose coach beholds them as dears.


Yet I recall Coach Blair, my junior year,

Whose patting our butts we had to endure –

Could he have been another coach who’s queer?


But he made our team champs year after year,

And Hawkins wins titles for Missouri –

So maybe, just maybe, we can endure

A coach who’s a winner although he’s queer.








George Held publishes his poems, stories, translations & book reviews widely and has been nominated 5 times for a Pushcart Prize. His fourteenth collection of poems, AFTER Shakespeare: Selected Sonnets (Cervená Barva Press), appeared in fall 2010.