We would like to thank Rita Rusty Rose, writer and activist, for sharing some of her work with us. Pride is the anniversary of a riot, and it is our privilege to celebrate the legacy of Stonewall by sharing the work of someone who was there. The work is its own introduction, but we will say this much: we have converted the pages Rusty gave us into jpeg files, instead of transferring the text into our site, so that the words will lie as Rusty arranged them, including the white space. These poems are raw and tense and beautiful, and that white space can come as a welcome break for the eyes. This format makes it more difficult to view these works on a cell phone or tablet. We also included some explanatory notes in Rita’s own hand, labeled “(R)”.
There are stories behind each one especially “Put the T” and “Winter Creeper.” With “Put the T,” for years our community had squabbles over who was at Stonewall. This is my way of leaving an imprint before I go. (R)
“Put the T First” was published in Veranda Sundown and Stonewall’s Legacy. This version was condensed for a news show.
“From the Pillory” has not yet been published in any volume or collection.
“South Broome” is about a Lesbian bar in Lindenhurst, NY. (R) It was published in Veranda Sundown and Stonewall Legacy.
Winter Creeper… During the 50th the Stonewall Pioneers were not honored by NYC Heritage of Pride, this is my response (R).
Rita B. Rose is an award winning poet, author and playwright. She has performed her works for colleges, organizations and social programs. She is the recipient of two Bards awards and is currently a Long Island poet laureate.
Click here to buy her books.