Joseph Northington

"Aubrey, let's walk up and view the body."
"So every head in this funeral home can turn?"
"Listen Aubrey, I gotta pay tribute. You know I loved me some Porkchop."
"Jerome, I don't give a flying fuck about Porkchop! I wanna see how the mortician covered up that hole in his face. Why did they call him Porkchop, anyway?"
"Cause he had a big Porkchop, if you get my meaning."
"I don't understand how you could be with someone who low-rated and beat us. If DonDon hadn't shot him, I would have. How big was his porkchop, anyway?"
"Listen Aubrey, Porkchop knew he was gay, but being straight acting was his way of keeping homophobes off his back."
"You crazy, Jerome! That didn't give him no right to kick our ass and call us fags! DonDon shot him point blank in the face cause he was tired of getting beat."
"It wasn't Porkchop, Jerome, it was society. Porkchop was the kindest person I knew. He treated me special, gave me money and bought me clothes. He use to cry on my shoulder 'cause he knew his crazy father would kill him if he found out. All I could do was hold Porkchop tight and kiss the pain away."
"You won't have to worry about the pain no more. DonDon took care of that."
"That was low, Jerome, you know I'm in mourning."
"Aubrey, Porkchop was no more than a theif in the night, stealing from fools like you. During the day, you were no more than a statue, and he a dog with a cocked leg."
"Jerome, I don't expect you to understand. Come on, let's go pay our respects."
"Thank God the lights are dim."
"Jerome, ain't no way you gon' be missed in that baseball cap, baggy overalls, green highttops sneakers, and that big Gucci bag on your shoulder."
"Oh Lord, Aubrey, there go Big Mouth Mattie from Church! She gon' tell everybody!"
"Jerome, slow down and listen to the rhythm of the organ music. Look at him. My baby! He's so beautiful."
"Look at his parents looking at us!"
"Jerome, he look so sweet in his white suit."
"Look at the indentation in his face! Oh Lord! Aubrey, what are you doing?"
"I just wanna hold and kiss my Porkchop one last time."
"Oh Heavenly Father! The child don' lifted Porkchop's torso out of the casket!"
"Jerome, it ain't his fault, he had to act straight because my Porkchop was afraid to be himself."

First published: March 1994
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