The Revelation

A revelation: that I can feel this way again.

That the dullness and the fog could give way to something so shining with life.

I thought this part of me had died with my old life

I re emerged from the edge of death with a coldness in my bones

But what I needed was your words, and all the sounds that your mouth makes

The way your eyes track each movement of my limbs, the way you see each twitch and tremble until you catch the rhythm.

You cup my pulse in your hands and blow your sweet breath on it until the pace quickens

And I bloom out from within the container of your chest.

Somewhere I already knew how to blossom.

What I needed was a steady hand to hold my soil.

Lost in You

You are the father I always wanted

You are the lover I always needed.

Next to you I was as calm as a rock.

With you I was as wild as a storm.

So I came back again. After everything. I could not stay away.

I know now: You are no soulmate. And this is no fairytale.

It was a frenzy. A flock of sparrows that swarms and then comes to rest suddenly.

I cannot explain us in moments. It was in the movement we made together:

The flashes of dark. Sudden ruptures of light. Bursts of secret sadism. The pain of pushing and pulling endlessly.

And finally out of my throat black spores erupted all over you.

This was my deepest fantasy, manifested as raw as sunlight. I could never have enough.

So we dug down together, until it collapsed all around us.

And now I am sick of you. I am sick from you.

I will never be so deeply lost in you.

Sexually liberate yourself!

Sexual liberation is such an important journey to take and it is often so misunderstood. For you it may be just as liberating to acknowledge that you like basic things in bed as it is for someone else to admit that they like all sorts of rough and freaky things in bed. It’s okay to like it sweet and gentle, it’s okay to like it hard and edgy. What’s not okay is to not know yourself- to deny yourself. To not know what you really want. What’s not okay is to stay in a relationship with someone you are not sexually compatible with. Who doesn’t satisfy you. The specific practices you engage in are not related to how sexually liberated you are. Owning what you want, whatever that is, and finding people with compatible desires to own it with- that is whats important.

Being sexually liberated does not mean you have to be kinky. It does not mean that you have to like having sex a lot or even at all. It means that you have gotten to know yourself deeply without shame, without judgment. It means you understand the deep roots that trace back through your life that has caused your sexuality to develop the way it has. It means you understanding the influences that have sculpted your sexuality. And it means that you revisit your desires often, letting your thoughts and your fantasies shift and unfold as you change over time. It means embracing your own unique version of sexuality, whatever that looks like for you, and find ways to practice and celebrate it with others who want it like that too.

Enduring Sex

Just take it. Until I was well into young adulthood, I assumed that pain was just a normal part of sex. Of course, by this I mean sex as defined by the typical penis-in-vagina penetrative sex generally practiced by cisgender and heterosexual couples. Vaginal discomfort was such a regular part of my experience that I just accepted penetration as something that was just going to hurt sometimes. Even beyond my personal experience, I was overtly taught as a young preteen that most women bleed the first time they have sex, and that it is often painful. Once you “get through” this first time, I was told, it can feel better the next time.

And so the layers of my internalized sexism continue to be uncovered! The more I unlearn the patriarchal underpinnings of my own belief systems, the more I discover they are lurking within me. These ways of thinking have been so conditioned into me that continually, I find the things I took for granted have to be confronted and dismantled, over and over in an endless spiral. It goes especially deep around sensitive cultural topics like sexual health and behavior- the layers of social mythology I thought were truth keep peeling back. Without serious critical thought we assume these stories to be objective- we just accept the patterns we have already experienced as the way things are supposed to be.

What I thought I knew about “normal” heteronormative sex I learned from peers, from adults, from magazine covers, from film and TV: Women are supposed to be sexy, and supposed to be desired by men. To be sexy, and to be desired by men, we have to enjoy having sex with them. To enjoy having sex with men, we have to enjoy it in the ways that they want it. And often, that means enduring penetration, even when it is uncomfortable. These messages were underpinned by even earlier lessons taught to me from the beginning of my sexual development, when I read passive descriptions of women in sexual education materials: “the man puts his penis into the woman’s vagina”. This began the framework in my mind where I visualized women “taking it” from men- lying on their backs and acquiescing. Then came the often repeated idea that losing my virginity would certainly hurt, and that I would very likely bleed, but that this was normal and it would get better with time. The lesson all of this taught me was that discomfort was something I would simply need to endure because it was normal, and I was expected me disregard it for the man’s enjoyment. It was assumed that I would go through with it regardless of how it felt to me.

It is only recently that I am recognizing the layers of absurdity I was brainwashed to believe. I was literally taught that I was supposed to bleed and suffer for the pleasure of men, from the beginning of my sexual development. I was taught that penetrative sex is something that men require of us, and we must portray to them that we desire too, regardless of if we really did. So even desire was taught to me under this guise of patriarchy: that not only must I acquiesce to sex to keep men satisfied, but I must perform as if I desired it exactly in the way they desire it as well. Keeping the man happy was supposed to be my primary turn on- and good enough to outweigh any physical discomfort I really felt.

It wasn’t until I was into my twenties that I started realizing that there was actually no reason why penetration was somehing that had to be suffered through. Despite growing up in a liberal home, and being familiar with feminist thought and writings, it took me a long time to realize that no one should have to “suffer through” any sexual act. That no one should be penetrated unless they really truly desire it and experience genuine pleasure from it. That when you are adequately aroused, penetration can occur without any pain or discomfort- but in fact it could feel fantastic. I never recognized before that being penetrated can in fact feel amazing.

All these beliefs I had just accepted as medically accurate: assuming that penetrative sex was just a somewhat uncomfortable experience, but that I had to let it happen: that at best it wouldn’t hurt me too much, or leave me feeling raw or sore.

No. This was all false. And now I work to embrace a whole new mindset, where penetration is something I can ache for. I can ravenously wet and slippery long before penetration occurs. I can be so turned on and dripping before any penetration happens that when my vagina finally entered it is ecstatic feel so filled up. It can feel amazing- it should feel amazing. And if it does not feel like this to you, maybe there are hidden messages you have also been assuming to be true.

Only sensation

When we plunge into each other’s bodies it reminds me of the first time we jumped into an icy river together on a hot day: the first time I saw you with your hair wet, uninhibited, soaked with sun.

You smother me with yourself: your tongue is soft as silky petals, your hands on my hips as firm as roots gripping the earth.

You make me feel like a child.

You make me feel like a goddess.

Here I am still: giddy, distractable, my crush for you as warm and squishy as a little girl’s.

We call forward together in deep connection- it is a rush like swallows as they dive into the nest. It is a flow like a warm current sliding into a deep pool.

You push me so far into my body that I no longer have awareness of my own mind: I am only

Experience,

I am only

Alive.

I am the feelers of the sea urchin:

I am only sensation.

I am stretched long across the water,

I am lengthened thickly across the stars:

Our love is surrender to perception- it is submission to our senses.

Sex Has a Patriarchy Problem

Heterosexual sex has a patriarchy problem. I’m not talking about sexual violence or rape culture here, although those are inherently related issues. I’m talking about how heterosexual sex by default occurs along a basically patriarchal narrative- even when consensual- even when negotiated- even when it is “good” for everyone involved.

When we begin to question what we have previously known to be true, we can either expand on the existing framework, or we can dismantle and rebuild a new framework entirely. If we truly want to shift the status quo, we must realize that adding more pieces to an already existing puzzle is not actually creating a new picture. It might be more complicated, but it still perpetuates the same overall pattern.

Taking the same narrative of patriarchal norms in sex and adding to it, or switching it around, does not make it revolutionary. Performing a lot of cunnilingus before having penis-in-vagina intercourse does not make is feminist. Men who make their female partner orgasm once or twice before they stick their dick in does not automatically make them sexual revolutionaries. Adding more plot twists onto the same old story is not a meaningful method of deconstruction.

Many men trying to unlearn patriarchal socialization have recognized that sex has been to taught to them as an act of conquest and domination. It was not presented to them as a mutual act in which all parties engage enthusiastically, rather they were taught that it is a tool for asserting power over another. This is deeply ingrained for many men, and often a long, difficult process to unlearn. And the reality is, it’s easier to expand on a schema that has been programmed into our brains as “normal”, then to totally dismantle it and rebuild a new schema.

So we have gotten a lot of “feminist” men having “feminist sex”- which often looks like men being engaged in consent culture, men being attentive to women’s pleasure, men letting women orgasm first, and increased amounts of time for foreplay before penises get inserted into vaginas, etc. These are all great starting points- but it does not actually change the status quo. It does not pull the problem out from the roots- it is simply trimming the most problematic parts around the top.

So what would it look like to actually get rid of the path we have all been conditioned into accepting, and re write a totally new one?

Imagine sex with no set script. Imagine sex with no end goal. Imagine sex which was based purely on profound pleasure, which had no preoccupation with performance, which had no need for feelings of “achievement”. Imagine sex that was fluid, that was endlessly experimental, that was based purely on in-the-moment desires and negotiations.

Because the reality is, not only would this revolutionize cisgender, heterosexual sex, but it would shift the nature of all types of queer sex as well. We are so conditioned to see sex as perfomance, as conquest, as a standardized list we can check off from lest we be seen as “weird”, lest we do anything “unexpected”. Although this conditioning affects cisgender men the most severely, we all suffer from the same programming. And all sex could be radically shifted if we let go of these norms.

Sex doesn’t have to be “A, B, then C”. It doesn’t have to be “step 1, step 2, step 3”. What might happen if we throw out the standard? It’s hard to do- it’s a continuous journey towards unlearning and relearning. It can be so easy to find ourselves falling back into the patterns we have been habituated to. But how fulfilling it could be to step back from the things we assume and write our own sexual stories- whatever they might look like.

Thrill

I am so easily bored,

taken over by my endless need for thrill.

It won’t leave until I am dazed and spent,

until I can no longer speak:

until I am crushed beneath the weight of your hands and legs.

My endless need for thrill:

I ask you to beat away the dreariness of life.

I won’t be satisfied until I am bruised and burned,

until I’m broken and put back together:

I want it over and over again.

 

Lust

Lust moves circularly

It slithers with the movements of eels

It shines with the slick sheen of honey

It blossoms, dies, and returns us crushed, scented like petals, into the world

My lust is wet as a mouth, glowing like eyes,

it is the blankets piled high, my fingers tensed

I will swallow it, like I am made of only throat

Lust it loud, it reopens wounds

Lust is agitation, lust is raw-

but later, in the dark, the bed sinks low with the weight of it’s divinity