Poet Richard Blanco made history as the first openly gay and Latino man to read a poem at a presidential inauguration in 2013, when Barack Obama was sworn in for his second term. Since then, he's been on our radar as one of the top queer poets you should know, even stopping by Anderson Cooper's show to reflect on his historic inaugural poem.
Blanco's newest piece, "Until We Could," is a striking poem commissioned by national advocacy group Freedom to Marry, in commemoration of the 10 years since Massachusetts became the first state to allow same-sex couples to legally marry. The Daily Beast published the poem — and an evocative, touching video to accompany the piece — on its site today.
The Daily Beast notes that the short film, directed by David Lowery and Yen Tan, and featuring the voices of Ben Foster and House of Cards' Robin Wright, was an official selection for the 2014 Cannes Film Festival.
The video was shot in Austin, Texas — part of a state that is on the verge of marriage equality, after a federal district judge struck down the state's ban on same-sex marriage in February. That decision has been appealed by the state's Republican attorney general and is awaiting scheduling at the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Blanco, who told The Daily Beast he and his partner of 14 years have not yet "gotten around" to getting married, though they hope to do so early next year, said he hopes his composition will become a common reading at same-sex weddings nationwide.
"That’s one of the things I hope for it — that it can be used at gay weddings, for all generations," Blanco said. "I hope the poem reminds young people about the work their mamas and papas did for equality to get them to this point, that they realize the struggle isn't over, that they must keep carrying the torch for those who aren’t as lucky, who cannot say 'I do.'"
Grab a box of tissues for the inevitable happy tears, and experience Blanco's poem, "Until We Could," come to life in the video below.