Other Countries Marches on Washington

On October 11, 1987, members of Other Countries attended the Second National March on Washington for Lesbian & Gay Rights, a historic gathering of circa 500,000 attendees (vs. the 200,000 estimated by the U.S. Park Police). They processed behind a purple and black banner sewn by Roy Gonsalves. The images below were captured by B.Michael Hunter and/or his camera.

[L-R] Eric Perez (foreground, in white t-shirt and headband), Garry Gaines (foreground, in black cap), Olubode Shawn Brown (foreground, in white shirt, holding banner), Len Richardson (peering over the banner, directly above the “C” of “Countries”), Allan Williams (wearing glasses, looking toward the camera, behind the banner directly above the “OT” of “Other”), Allen Luther Wright (in dark shirt, holding banner).
[L-R] Eric Perez (left bottom corner, in white t-shirt and headband), Redvers Jeanmarie (background, in white cap and blue shirt carrying a Free Simon Nkoli placard), Garry Gaines (foreground, wearing a black cap), Donald Woods (background, looking directly at the camera with both hands on black cap), Ali Wadud (background, wearing glasses with maroon jacket around his waist), Len Richardson (background), Olubode Shawn Brown (foreground, holding banner), Allan Williams (background, wearing glasses, situated between Olubode and banner), Allen Luther Wright (background, holding banner).
Garry Gaines (left) and Len Richardson (right) carry the banner. Donald Woods, holding a camera, is foregrounded in the right-hand corner. Redvers Jeanmarie (partially cut off) is behind Donald to his right carrying a Free Simon Nkoli placard. Jaan Urban Holmgren, life partner of Assotto Saint, appears above Len Richardson’s elbow.
Garry Gaines and Olubode Shawn Brown on The Mall.
[L-R] B.Michael, Garry Gaines, Olubode Shawn Brown, Cary Alan Johnson (holding the furled Other Countries banner), Allen Luther Wright (in profile). Post-March. Photographer unknown.
Garry Gaines, Cary Alan Johnson, Colin Robinson, Olubode Shawn Brown, Donald Woods. In Cary’s DC apartment.
Cary Alan Johnson, Colin Robinson, Olubode Shawn Brown, B.Michael and Donald Woods. In Cary’s DC apartment. Photo: Garry Gaines.

Allen Luther Wright seems to remember this Regina Belle song being played at Cary’s apartment during that trip.

B.Michael kept these front page articles from prominent national newspapers as souvenirs.



Other Countries Marches at NYC Pride

B.Michael was in possession of these half-dozen photos of Other Countries and other Black Queer contingents on New York City’s Pride Sunday, June 28, 1987 — courtesy of “Nigel (or Nisel) from Canada”.

National Coalition of Black Lesbians and Gays
National Coalition of Black Lesbians and Gays | Lavender Light Gospel Choir!
Other Countries | Lavender Light Gospel Choir! | [L-R] Lidell Jackson, Reggie Jackson, Carlos Segura, Roy Gonsalves, Donald Woods
Other Countries | [L-R] Reggie Jackson (holding banner), Carlos Segura (with Walkman) at West 33rd Street & 5th Avenue
Other Countries | [L-R] Reggie Jackson (holding banner), Donald Woods (wearing black Other Countries t-shirt and rust-colored pants


Bar Review #1

Three years after earning his J.D. at Northeastern University School of Law, B.Michael took a course to review for the bar exam.


He filled in 14 spiral-bound notebooks, brimming with mnemonic-acronyms. The first page of each is pictured below to provide a sense of what he was studying.

B.Michael had previously registered for a similar course to prepare him to sit for the July 1984 exam in New York, just after graduation, but decided against it.


“GO BANANAS with these exotic Caribbean fruits!”

While in Antigua & Barbuda, cherished friend and poet Donald Woods sent B.Michael a postcard with what seems like some spontaneously composed verse! After B.Michael moved from Boston in early 1987, he stayed for a patch in Spanish Harlem (Manhattan) with his mom. Her address is the only legible clue as to when B.Michael received it.


lights bulbous with
dusty grey globes
have their own hum to

answer the insistent
night songs of
secret crickets hiding

from the ample white rattan
curving stiffly beneath
flamingoes and turquoise leaves

posing on the sides and fronts
of chubby cushions
that allow a summer dress
airy and self conscious
the ideal flirtation.

© Donald Walter Woods 1987