Where We Meet

sanc­tu­ar­ies il­lus­trated

Hello Mr. Magazine - - TABLE OF CONTENTS - Il­lus­tra­tions by Timju Jean­net

A com­mon re­frain we hear in the queer com­mu­nity is that we choose our fam­ily – that there is agency in who we trust, who we depend on, who we sur­round our­selves with. That there is a group of peo­ple who, within a cul­ture marred by dif­fer­ence, ex­ists with us in sol­i­dar­ity and warmth. Choos­ing our own fam­ily means find­ing our own safe spa­ces. Sanc­tu­ar­ies built into the ev­ery­day, then sep­a­rated from it. There aren’t any lo­gis­ti­cal re­quire­ments. A safe space, your safe space, doesn’t have to fit any one shape. Take Papi Juice, a party se­ries for queer peo­ple of color that makes its way around Brook­lyn. You can feel the ten­sion leav­ing peo­ple’s shoul- ders, as you en­ter the room filled with twin­kling light. The Church of 8 Wheels in San Fran­cisco is a hol­lowed-out cathe­dral that’s been con­verted into a roller disco. You can bring your own skates or rent a pair. Peo­ple come in groups, in cou­ples, and many come alone. A safe space is a cor­ner seat at your neigh­bor­hood bar, a soc­cer field, a dat­ing app, a cof­fee with a men­tor. It’s a kiki with your girl­friends, or a queer kick­ball league or the glow of a Tori Amos mes­sage board. It’s a poetry open mic. It's an asy­lum you seek, flee­ing a coun­try in tur­moil. It’s a club in Or­lando on Latin Night. It’s a space to ex­ist in, fully and freely.

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