Archive for the ‘Sexuality’ Category

I forgot to keep my eyes from closing

April 4th, 2013

I forgot to keep my eyes from closing
when I slid inside you.  How the rose sings
all around, around me, many-petaled.
Where are you?  In darkness whom I’m losing.

Nothing New Under the Sun

January 25th, 2013

Truly, there is nothing new under the sun.  I’m sure you will remember the law recently proposed and nearly enacted in Virginia that would have required a woman seeking an abortion to undergo an involuntary invasive ultrasound procedure.  The other day, a friend of mine shared on Facebook a satirical proposal that men’s penises should be similarly probed.  Bearing that in mind, Sherman, set the Wayback Machine for 1759, and chapter 20 of Book One of The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman.

Just in case you cannot immediately recall to mind exactly what transpires at that juncture of Mr. Laurence Sterne’s novel, let me assist you.  Tristram, the narrator, is busy instructing the reader that said reader should have deduced that Tristram’s mother was not a Catholic (or, as Tristram would have it, a “papist”), from the fact that Tristram’s mother said that it was necessary for Tristram to be born before he could be christened.  Not so for Papists!, says Tristram.  He cites – well, quotes in full, actually, in French – a purported 1733 opinion of the Doctors of the Sorbonne, then a Catholic institution, that in certain extreme cases an unborn infant could be baptized sight unseen “par le moyen d’une petite canulle… sans faire aucun tort à la mere.”  Mr. Shandy, speaking one presumes for Mr. Sterne, goes on to suggest that a similar operation might benefit the “Homunculi” which were at the time supposed to be the male contribution to conception, “par le moyen d’une petite canulle… sans faire aucun tort au pere.”

I hasten to add that I am unable to verify the authenticity of the Sorbonne Doctors’ opinion.  Sterne might have made it up.  In any case, I am sure it does not represent present-day Catholic teaching regarding baptism!  It’s comforting to know that at least some things change.  It gives one hope that some day all men will respect women’s bodies as they do their own.

Bare Nekkid Boys

May 15th, 2011

A recent encounter with high school memories has me thinking about the sexual culture of hell.  In Dante’s Inferno, souls are punished for sex out of wedlock and for sex with taboo partners.  In To Join the Lost, seven hundred years later, the picture has evolved.  In place of the “sexually incontinent,” we find sexual predators.  Instead of damnation for being gay, people condemn themselves to suffering for denial.

These thoughts come to you courtesy of the Facebook group for alumni of Kenmore West Senior High School, my alma mater.  A lot of comment there the past few days has been sparked by the recollection that, in the late sixties and seventies, gym teachers required boys to swim naked in the pool.

The immediate reaction of many, of course, is “eeuw!”  Where were the parents?  Where were the authorities?  What were they thinking?  Imagine anything like that happening today!  At least one commenter has used the word “pedophile,” and there has been talk of lawsuits.

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