Ian McKellen Writings

25 June 1994 | Gay Games IV Closing Address

Yankee Stadium, New York

Around the edge of the participant's medal it says:

"To do one's best is the ultimate goal of human achievement."

I hope the mainstream media report how many world records have been achieved this week.

What is this personal best in life beyond the games? Is it about being best in your job, if you have one? Is it about being a best friend, best lover or best buddy?

Whatever it is for you, I'd have to tell you from my own experience that I don't believe that your best can be fully achieved until you are out of the closet.

Even when you have completed the coming-out journey, the game, the match, the race are incomplete, until each sister and brother has been helped to a safe finish and participates in the joy of total honesty.

If we genuinely believe that the sprit of the Gay Games is important and that this has not just been a vacation, we can't wait another four years before it is organized all over again for us in Amsterdam.

The muscular and mental energy of the athletes has infected all of us admiring spectators — but you can be sure that the energy soon dissipates unless each of us is determined to keep alive the spirit of New York during this last week.

We are fortunate that "Gay Games IV" converges with "Stonewall 25." We can start our dedication to the future as soon as tomorrow.

Remember no one wins on  a march, no one tries to. We all march forward together.

"Our line winds into Central Park
and doubles itself in a snakedance
We cover the Sheep Meadow —
shouting — lifting our arms
We are marching into ourselves
Like a body gathering its cells
Creating itself in sunlight.
It seems we will converge until we explode
Sisters and sisters, brothers and brothers, together."

(Poem by unknown author)

More Writings
Ian McKellen's Home Page
Bookmark and Share