1874 – Amy Lowell American lesbian poet was born in Brookline. Massachusetts.
A militant literary leader she thumbed her nose at the Boston Brahmans who raised her and outed herself. Her lover was actress Ada Dwyer Russell whom she called “Peter.” Russell is reputed to be the subject of Lowell’s more erotic works, most notably the love poems contained in ‘Two Speak Together’, a subsection of Pictures of the Floating World. The two women traveled to England together, where Lowell met Ezra Pound, who at once became a major influence and a major critic of her work. Pound considered Lowell’s embrace of Imagism to be a kind of hi-jacking of the movement, and among his friends he referred to her as the “hippo-poetess”, because of her large body size. Lowell has been linked romantically to writer Mercedes de Acosta, but the only evidence of any contact between them is a brief correspondence about a planned memorial for Duse. Lowell was a short but imposing figure who kept her hair in a bun and wore a pince-nez.
1923 – Brendan Behan is born.
Behan was an Irish poet, short story writer, novelist, and playwright who wrote in both English and Irish. Born in Dublin into a republican family, he became a member of the IRA’s youth organisation Fianna Éireann at the age of fourteen. However, there was also a strong emphasis on Irish history and culture in the home, which meant he was steeped in literature and patriotic ballads from a tender age. Behan eventually joined the IRA at sixteen, which led to him serving time in a borstal youth prison in the United Kingdom (see “The Borstal Boy” ) and was also imprisoned in Republic of Ireland. During this time, he took it upon himself to study and he became a fluent speaker of the Irish language. Subsequently released from prison as part of a general amnesty given by the Fianna Fáil government in 1946, Behan moved between homes in Dublin, Kerry and Connemara and also resided in Paris for a period. Behan had married Beatrice Salkeld in 1955. A daughter, Blanaid, was born in 1963. This however, was not enough to bring Behan back from his alcoholic abyss. By early March 1964, the end was in sight. Collapsing at the Harbour Lights bar, he was transferred to the Meath Hospital in central Dublin, where he died, aged 41.
The family of Brendan Behan claim that he was bisexual all of his life, but he kept it quiet for his families sake.
1943 – Marc Stevens
Marc ’10½’ Stevens was a pioneering bisexual sex industry figure during the 1970’s in New York City. He appeared in over 80 pornographic movies, and he also led an erotic dance troupe and performed in live sex shows. While he predominantly appeared in heterosexual films and loops, he made a number of gay movies as well. He was a close associate of leading sex industry figures such as Jason & Tina Russell, Annie Sprinkle, who was also his neighbor for a time, Sharon Mitchell, Jamie Gillis, Georgina Spelvin and Gloria Leonard. Tall and lean with a well-defined musculature, he had the nickname “10½” because of the size of his rather large circumcised penis
Stevens passed away of AIDS in 1989 at age 46
Continue reading Gay History – February 9: Irish Poet Brendan Behan, Archie Bunker’s Gay Buddy, and Jerry Falwell Outs A Teletubby