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Stories: Doug Wright and David Clement

Love
Stories: Doug Wright and David Clement

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On May 16, a day after the California supreme court ruled to legalize same-sex marriage, singer-songwriter David Clement proposed to his partner, Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Doug Wright, on a Post-it note.

Married: August 28, 2008 Together: 5 years

On May 16, a day after the California supreme court ruled to legalize same-sex marriage, singer-songwriter David Clement proposed to his partner, Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Doug Wright, on a Post-it note. The note, attached to a wooden Hello Kitty picture frame bearing a Halloween snapshot of the couple, said, "Marry me quickly! Love, David." Wright said yes.

"It was a mutual decision we had both been talking about for a while," Wright says, sitting with Clement on the terrace of their apartment in Lower Manhattan. "But we also both wanted to propose to each other--we each wanted to have a story to tell." So this summer, while dining at a restaurant overlooking the Spanish Steps in Rome, Wright presented Clement with a hand-blown Venetian glass Hello Kitty figurine and turned the question around.

On August 28, joined by their parents and a few intimate friends, the two men were married at the Casa Del Mar hotel in Santa Monica, Calif., by Metropolitan Community Church minister Neil Thomas. As befits a marriage of writers, passages from James Baldwin, Simone de Beauvoir, Oscar Wilde, and even Dr. Seuss were part of the ceremony. Afterwards there was dinner and dancing to their favorite song, the Andrews Sisters number "Bei Mir Bist Du Schoen," in the hotel lobby.

While the wedding day was momentous, other days stand out as poignantly. For instance, when Clement became teary eyed as the two went to pick up their marriage license a few days before the ceremony, or when the owner of the jewelry store in Provincetown, where they bought their rings, snapped a Polaroid of the couple and posted it on the wall beside photos of other newlyweds.

Now that vows have been exchanged, Wright can't seem to shake the word "partner." "To me it connotes a shared enterprise, and that's what this feels like," he says. Clement has no such qualms. "Not me. I really like the word 'husband,' " he says, "I use it all the time now."

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