for Eddie Araujo, who lived as Gwen

In October, 2002 17-year-old Eddie Araujo was murdered. Eddie identified as female and often went by the name Gwen. She was reportedly killed after some boys she had had sex with discovered that she was physically a male. Gwen was beaten and strangled and buried in a shallow grave in the woods.

Brandon Teena, a young woman who lived as a man, was the subject of the move "Boys Don't Cry".

Mathew Sheppard was a college student in Wyoming when he was beaten to death because he was gay. His story is told in the play and film "The Laramie Project".

Gwen's mother buried her with her nails and makeup done and wearing a dress.


Oh Christ! They've gone and done it again!

another lost boy another lost girl another lost life

Brandon Teena rides again and fear is holding the reins

Brandon I swear you didn't die in vain

despite all evidence to the contrary, we do remember

I know they've killed Gwen and buried her out in the woods

as if you didn't matter, as if you were never here

but don't believe their lies, their eyes, their innocent pleas

their shaking knees

'cause they've gone and done it again

they've proven how low a human being can go

(never underestimate humanity's ability tobe cruel and stupid)

and Brandon if you see Gwen, tell her we miss her, tell her we're sorry

that they've done it again

and I say "they" because I'm afraid to say "we" because I'm afraid we've

let you down

we should have seen this coming

we should have taught our children better than this

'cause goddamnit there's more to raising a kid than don't sneeze on your

sister and look

both ways before crossing the street

and Gwen you were a beautiful child

yes a child, not yet grown and full of confusion and questions and a strange


indigenous to youth

your friends will miss you terribly, even the petty , selfish parts of you

because yes, even these parts carried beauty with them

through your troubled gaze

and your mother will bury you with your makeup and nail polish intact

because she loves you and wants you as beautiful in death as you were in


and as you carried beauty

the men who did this carry guilt

and as you carried your secret power

these men now carry the shame of the angels

and I see them now in their shackles and their shame and I wonder

we may be able to punish them, but can we teach them?

or more importantly, can they teach us??

can we learn what we need from them to not make them again?

and these men (I call them men though they are rally no more than boys, as


as you, Gwen, and no more in control of their own youthful powers than you

were of yours but these boys on the cusp of hope and potential made some

very bad, grown-up decisions and so these boys must now be men)

and these men, their faces so heavy now

have altered the balance irrevocably

and the powers that brought them this far can take them no further

they have been destroyed, subsumed by their cruelty

and they dance now much more slowly

and their tears are now much more obvious

and they will declaim their innocence as they devise some

misunderstanding to cover their abomination and their anger



I can understand that they were angry

what I can't understand is that somehow they thought killing

was an appropriate expression of this anger

what I can't understand is that somehow there was no one at that place

at that time

no one who questioned the brutal reality unfolding before them


I bet they've got questions now


I can't help you now, Gwen

I can't save you from the violent, silent fears so woven into our culture

all I can offer is this;

I will remember.

I will remember you and what was done

just as I remember Brandon Teena and Mathew Sheppard

I will remember you

and I will tell your stories

and I will hope that next time

this is enough


(c) David McIntire


some web pages about Gwen:



CD page