About Us

Three lesbians with disabilities crossing the street

About the Poem: “The Fabled Asp”

In 2008 Fabled Asp founder Laura Rifkin asked the disabled lesbian poet, Barbara Ruth to write a poem explaining why we chose Fabled Asp as our name. Asp is the Old English word for aspen. In her poem, Barbara Ruth speaks in the voice of the aspen grove, evoking the nature of these ancient and resourceful trees, so persistent, so beautiful and sacred to so many cultures, their short lives essential to the forest’s growth. In the poem she expresses the qualities that make the aspen such a perfect metaphor for the community and the consciousness of disabled lesbians and for the organization documenting our lives.

How did we get a name like Fabled Asp? It’s an acronym:

F fabulous, A activist, B Bay Area, LE Lesbians, D with disabilities, A – S – P A Storytelling Project
So we had the word Fabled, meaning legendary, fabulous, and we added a slash:
F – slash – abled, and by that we introduced a new meaning: one who is differently-abled of the female persuasion. Asp old English for aspen. Trees that grow in colonies supporting the individual tree and the collective grove.
-Written and narrated by Judith Masur

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