Sunday, June 1, 2014

You've Got to Hide Your Love Away

I've always loved The Beatles song, "You've Got to Hide Your Love Away." It was released five years before I was born. Like many things that existed before I did, I never thought too much it. It's melodious. Something you'd sing along to. But I never questioned just what we were saying.

Today when I heard the song, I really listened to the lyrics:

Here I stand head in hand
Turn my face to the wall
If she's gone I can't go on
Feeling two-foot small

Everywhere people stare
Each and every day
I can see them laugh at me
And I hear them say

Hey you've got to hide your love away
Hey you've got to hide your love away

How can I even try
I can never win
Hearing them, seeing them
In the state I'm in

How could she say to me
Love will find a way
Gather round all you clowns
Let me hear you say

Hey you've got to hide your love away
Hey you've got to hide your love away

One of the reasons I like this song so much is because it's told from the perspective of a sissy boy. And I mean "sissy boy" in the best possible way. A human with male genitalia who says "fuck you" to societal standards and shows his emotional side. I've been friends with many sissy boys over the years. Sissy boys rock. Sissy boys are tough. Their emotions are raw, their opinion of the world calloused. I have the utmost respect for sissy boys.

And it got me thinking, should we hail John Lennon as a pioneer in transgender or agender rights? A person's gender is not determined by his or her or their physical appearance, but by how he or she or they feel on the inside. If that's the case, then John Lennon, author of the sissy-boy mantra, "You've Got to Hide Your Love Away" should be considered a leader in living an authentic life, despite what society says. In the mid-Sixties, when Lennon composed this song, it was a time in the western world when boys were taught to be stoic and strong. They were not supposed to cry. They were not supposed to write songs about expressing their emotions. If they got hurt they were supposed to walk it off and quit acting like a sissy.

But John Lennon said fuck that. Men have feelings. Men hurt. Men need. Lennon might not have lived long enough to see society evolve to where it is today, when transgender people end up on the cover of Time Magazine and all over my Facebook News Feed. I think if he did, he'd embrace the movement.

Looking for more good transgender music? Check out this link to a top-ten list of transgender songs.