Gayle Madwin (queerbychoice) wrote,
Gayle Madwin

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I Adore This Quote Even More Than I Can Rationally Justify Adoring It

This is from a story about an elderly chief justice of the Danish Supreme Court who, having led an unwaveringly upright conservative life, sentenced a queer novelist to six years in prison for the combined crimes of writing a lascivious, sexually explicit novel and of having sex with a very extremely willing but slightly underage boy - after which the elderly chief justice visited the novelist in prison to take him a folder he'd left behind in the courtroom, and the novelist took the opportunity to read the elderly chief justice a short story he'd written about a trial in which all the judges and lawyers turn out to be wind-up robots instead of living humans. Upon hearing this story, the elderly chief justice suddenly realizes that he has indeed been living his life like a wind-up robot, and he helps the novelist illegally escape from prison and falls in love with him. (It's fiction, okay?) In this scene, the elderly chief justice has invited his long-ago-divorce ex-wife and his homophobic son Hektor to dinner with the novelist and has just announced his intention to leave Denmark and go into hiding with the novelist as his lover. The scene is narrated by Hektor.
Then the cook stepped up to stand by my father's side, and when he took off his white chef's hat I recognized him. It was the writer Morten Ross, on whom sentence had been passed and who ought to have been wearing prison clothes, ought to have had close-cropped hair and a shovel in his hand, but who stood before us with long hair, dressed as a cook.

My anger was like the pounding of blood behind my eyes and I had to speak very slowly so my voice would not fail me. "You have committed an unlawful act," I said.

My father looked me straight in the eye. Then he said, "I love him," and I felt as though loathing was about to make me take leave of my senses.

"One cannot," I said, "love a man."

Then my mother spoke up. "You are wrong, Hektor," she said. "It is quite possible. I have done it myself many a time."

—Peter Hoeg, "The Verdict on Ignatio Landstad Rasker"
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