So who did he want to kill and why? That, we'll get to later. However, the tangled tale of this particular relationship is just one of the many stories Moore tells in his compelling new book, Diary of a Man, which gathers together some of the best diary-entries-cum-essays he's written under the pseudonym 'Bootboy' for Hot Press magazine over the past decade. Dermod is a Dublin-born and London-based psychotherapist, astrologer and actor who happens to be gay, and during this interview in Dublin's Merrion Hotel last weekend it became increasingly apparent that many of those Hot Press articles are in fact coded messages back home to a country, city and even family he had to leave 12 years ago in order to lose, then find, himself in a relatively liberated metropolis like London, as many gays do.
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But even more specifically, perhaps, in one section of Diary of a Man Moore writes about reading Andrew Solomon's book on depression, The Noonday Demon, and details his own year of being clinically depressed and refers to encountering only men "in the grip of the same Neanderthal, phallic Daddy-search". If, for example, we are attracted to a woman, we seek out not only her essence but what she represents. There are many marriages where men marry women who look remarkably like their mother. The same can apply in terms of our fathers.
But I had a fantastic relationship with my dad, so when I use that phrase, it is more symbolically and in terms of archetypes, it's not necessarily about my real father. Nevertheless it has been said that many gay men - such as Tennessee Williams - hope to find in other men the love, tenderness, whatever, they didn't receive from their actual fathers. I point out that this is just a theoretical premise rather than my own personal perspective. That may be pathology but it'snot my pathology.
And, as far as I'm concerned, it doesn't matter a whit what sort of upbringing you had. That doesn't make us gay, heterosexual, it just doesn't work that way. I remember in my early years reading Spare Rib magazine, which was at the cutting edge of sexual politics. So there was all that education, and thinking, when it came to women's rights and so on. Like all good kids, we used to go to mass - but around the age of 11, I just stopped going. Even so, "three or four years later" Dermod again began to attend mass and went "every day for Lent" - almost as though it was his cause.
Among its many pronouncements, homosexuality was described as a "serious depravity" and "intrinsically disordered". This led to Dermod leaving the Catholic church. All of which, presumably, must have made Moore even more committed to asserting the primacy of the physical that is so often a feature of homosexual life and even seeking "redemption through sexual extravagance", to use a phrase he himself uses in Diary of a Man.
Dermod claims that his dad was "the son of a mixed marriage, Catholic and Protestant, had a hellish childhood because of that and grew up determined not to let bigotry or bias into his life. But when asked if he and Harry discussed the ramifications of that Papal Bull in relation to his own awakening awareness that he was "different" - as in gay - Moore admits to hesitancy.
EVEN so, more than a decade before moving to London at the age of 30 Dermod came out to his folks, who were very supportive. Yet at first, despite their liberalism, they were troubled by the kind of what-does-this-say-about-me-as-a-parent questions that frequently arise in such situations. And despite Moore's earlier rejection - during this interview - of the idea that there can be a compensatory dimension to homosexuality, his parents did think, "Was it me, did I not give him the love he needed?
It was hard for them to take on board the fact that their son was gay, in terms of the shock value alone.
But the bottom line is that I knew they loved me and that's what really matters. Falling in love for the first time was equally brilliant for Dermod, who says that his particular man taught him three valuable things: "how to roll a joint, cook brown rice and vegetables, and how to get angry! The latter, he acknowledges, was "the greatest lesson of all", and self-expression on every level - not just in terms of the language of emotions and sex - became a defining feature of his life in London.
But within a year of moving to London Dermod met the lover he would eventually want to kill and who could quite easily have killed him.
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Not only that; he continued to have unsafe sex with other men for the rest of the time they were together - another six months - and it was quite a while before Dermod had the courage to have an Aids test himself which, fortunately, proved to be negative. That whole area I've always found difficult to negotiate, so this man betraying me in such an obvious way was the culmination of all that. I thinkif you go into the blame game, start seeing yourself as a victim, you are really sunk.
I did that for a long time. The trigger for that depression was what happened with that guy but it also was overwork and things like that. Navigating this Page. Next Astrology Link Page.
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