I had a hard time coming up with something seductive to talk about today. Everything from leather, looks, voices, wine & cheese were tossed my way. I wanted to write about something that probably might fit better with my Monday Motivation days. However, I have been seduced by words. Words of other authors seduced me to wanting to write something like them. To put my thoughts into written form and seduce the reader.
I’m not talking about the words that make you glad you are all alone in your bed at night reading. Not the words that make your hand slink down your body to take care of yourself. But, the words that make you heart palpitate, those butterflies in your stomach, when you lick your lips because the words were so delicious coming out of your mouth.
Below, I’ve listed seven passages that have managed to do that to me.
The Mad Man by Samuel R. Delany This book is not for the feint of heart. On the back cover of the copy I own, the Richard Kasak edition from 1994, it says: Samuel R. Delany’s most graphic and unsettling novel. The Mad Man is a provocative look at contemporary social and sexual outsiders. It peeks into the dark side of human desire. From page one of the Proem:
Black, raddled, roped with veins, it rose like a charred tallboy from snarled bronze. Below, the texture and color of overripe avocados, testicles hung like rocks. It sagged in the envelope of flesh that held it to the belly, almost as high as the navel’s gnarled pit.
Fearful Symmetry by Greg Bills This was one of the first books I read where I encountered a kinky triangle in a main stream book. I loved it, for taking those steps and showing what it’s like to sink to one’s desires. From page seven of Fearful Symmetry
I didn’t mean to fall in love with them. I guess nobody ever does mean to fall in love. But it happens, and love brands itself on your brain matter. It’s like a new street appearing overnight in the city you’ve lived in your whole life. The street is one-way–you can’t turnaround and get off it–and it curves up ahead so that you can only see far enough to know that you’re veering into the unknown.
Spending by Mary Gordon I’ll admit that the cover got me, and I wanted to know why there was a nude man there. It is a told from the POV of a female artist and her muse. It’s sensual, the words took me by surprise and I fell in love with the fifty year old artist and her sexual journey. From page sixteen of Spending.
So I said, “You know, folks, there’s a tradition that male painters get to take advantage of: the woman who’s a combination model, housekeeper, cook, secretary. And of course she earns money. And provides inspiration. All over the world, girls are growing up dreaming of being the Muse for some kind of artist. Looking at their bodies in mirrors thinking, ‘Maybe some man would like to paint that.’ Reading French cookbooks that tell them how to make really succulent little dishes out of horsemeat with a lot of bay leaves and wine. Preparing physically and spiritually to carry his canvases to a hard-hearted gallery owner, their muscles straining, their eyes brimming with shed or unshed tears. Now I ask you, mothers and fathers of America, are your boys dreaming of these things? Where, I ask you, lovers of the arts, where are the male Muses?”
And he stood up, just there, in front of everyone, and said, “Right here.”
The Fan-Maker’s Inquisition by Rikki Ducornet I bought this because the subtitle of the book is A novel of the Marquis de Sade. I’m not going to lie, I had a huge fascination with the Marquis de Sade for most of my adult life. I’ve read books about him, by him, biographies and fictional accounts of those around him. And I love the lyrical writing style of Ms. Ducornet. I got lost in the words within. From page seven of the first chapter.
–A fan is like the thighs of a woman: It opens and closes. A good fan opens with a flick of the wrist. It produces its own weather–a breeze not so strong as to muss the hair.
Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov I bought this book like everyone else, because the movie was coming out. I’d heard about it, I wanted to make my own decision on it. I will be completely honest, the fantasy in the beginning of the book knocked me on the head. The reality in the second part of the book, was very difficult for me to read. For all my naughty thoughts and desires, nothing like this has ever entered my mind. But, Whoa… Nabokov can wield words with expertise. From page nine of chapter one.
Lolita, light of my life, fire of my loins. My sin, my soul. Lo-lee-ta; the tip of the tongue taking a trip of three steps down the palate to tap, at three, on the teeth. Lo. Lee. Ta.
She was Lo, plain Lo, in the morning, standing four feet ten in one sock. She was Lola in slacks. She was Dolly at school. She was Dolores on the dotted line. But in my arms she was always Lolita.
The Leather Daddy and the Femme by Carol Queen This was everything I ever wanted in a book. It was sexy, it was naughty, it was over-the-top and not afraid to go there. It played with your mind and didn’t care if it fucked you over. This book taught me a lot about flirting and how to just go for it. It’s probably why I get caught all the time checking out a man’s crotch. Live and learn. I love this book, and I hope this one little scene will help you find your way to a copy too. From page one, After the Light Changed.
I was looking pretty boyish that evening. maybe that’s why he looked twice at the stoplight when my car pulled up next to his motorcycle. Usually guys like that are moving; you just see a gleaming blur of black and silver. But here at the light was a real done-up daddy, sitting stock-still–except for his head, which turned in response to my eyes fixed on him and found what he saw noticeable enough to make him turn again. When boy energy gets into me I look like an effete young Cambridge faggot looking to go bad: round spectacles framing inquisitive eyes and a shock of hair falling down over one. Not classically daddy’s boy, something a little different. Maybe tonight this daddy was looking for a new kind of ride.
Thank you for reading along with me. Its been fun, I look forward to collecting more books that make me tingle.
What books make you feel this way?