What are the words that are falling away: the slick shame of apology, I mean apologizing for what lives inside my heart. Shame. Shame. This is the thing I want to give up for Lent, the hollow hoarding of misery just to wear it like a fur coat on my tongue, just so that I cannot fully enunciate, just so I can’t quite speak. Give me this, mother. Hold out your two choir hands and let me drop there this years-long bath of shame, this unguent tenacity, this bilge of broken bones, this dishonest levelour, this underskin. I have been wearing shame like it was my own name for so many years that I am not quite sure who to be without it, am altogether too naked, feel uncloaked even if what I really mean is washed clean. Clean has not been my name; I’m the girl who climbed into dirty and made a home, swept out one corner and brought in my books and a blanket. This is what I want to tell you – shame has been the armor, sure, wet and creaky though it was, wholly eroticized, consecrated, entangled with my every vein. I thought it was my own heartbeat – but I was wrong, wasn’t I? What does it mean, now, to be without that slick skin?
~~ ~~ ~~ ~~ ~~ ~~
It’s mid morning and today’s orgasm came pretty quick and hard; last night was a sleepy buzzing, I think I may very well have dozed through my actual coming I was so goddamn tired. But there I was in my nest, all sparkly in the aftermath of the Femmes Go Dirty South
event, ricocheted through with all of those women, their voices, the articulated and claimed desire, the saying precisely what we want from our bodies, from our lovers, from our communities — asking questions, naming truths, fucking shit up. Virgie
read a piece with so much clarity about how she comes (from an instruction manual for new lovers, phenomenal) that I almost wanted to cry: yes yes yes
. Look at her not apologizing at all: doing the opposite, in fact.
Where has it come from, this sense that I have to apologize for how I come, how I like to come, that my orgasms are less than because they happen mostly under my own fingers or vibrator (or–yes, can I say it over and over again — in the shower)? Does it matter at this point that I’ve spent years basically apologizing for being a survivor — look, I’m sorry that I’m broken in this way. I still really like sex, though, and if you can just help me come now and then, if you can just put up with how I come until I’m fixed / whole / healed and able to come different / hotter / better / more normally, then we’ll be all right.
But I do come normally. I want to come in other ways, too, sure — but these ways that I get to orgasm are normal. What would happen if I stopped obsessing about coming different and just let that be?
I’m speaking to the part in me that still feels broken, feels the direct link between the way that I can come the most easiluy/consistently when I’m with a lover and the fact that I first learned how to come in this particular way when my stepfather was raping me. How do you hold that link? How do you let it go? How do you fully claim a part of your sexuality that came to you through rape?
What if I stopped apologizing inside me, stopped saying: sorry, body, that we came at all during those years that we learned this skill, that we took this pleasure from him even as he tried to kill everything else in us — what if I stopped demanding that the teenage girl inside me apologize for what she did to stay alive?
~~ ~~ ~~ ~~ ~~ ~~
I want something hotter, sexier, cuter today — but this shit isn’t cute today. I was worked up this morning, got in the shower and was barely wetted down before I was on my back in the tub. Ready. Please. I dropped hard into a fantasy about actually getting to make use of one of those bathrooms at the Center for Sex and Culture
last night — maybe we were on break, maybe people were starting to settle back into their seats and it was starting to get quiet and you wanted me to be loud when I came, you wanted me to let them all know where I was and what I was doing.
And so I did.
I thought about how much I like to be in that place just before coming, when everything in me is swollen and sensitive and close, when I am so close. I can live in “so close” for hours, ride it, make myself crazy. Then there was that acknowledging whisper in me: yes, we’re going over the edge
— and I grinned, remembered to say thank you to my goddamn body, kept the water spray exactly where it was, imagined everyone in that place last night being able to hear me as I yelped and shouted and begged and Yes!
Oh, that was hot, my friends. I’m still a little wobbly.
~~ ~~ ~~ ~~ ~~ ~~
This is all there is today: too much to do, more I want to say. Last night I got to meet Shiloh McCabe (of The Sex Positive Photo Project
) who, last year, spent the month of may documenting the images and stories of folks who masturbate
— it’s devastatingly hot! I can’t wait to read all the stories.
I’m grateful to all of the women I got to read with last night, everyone in the audience, all the folks who name the truth about their desire and share that with others — with lovers, with friends, with strangers. I can’t tell you how much gets freed in me every time I hear another story that normalizes the way I come and all the different ways that we come. I need those stories. I need to share mine with you.
Be easy with you and your body. Thanks for reading — come again tomorrow!