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I am struggling to find a good pun about sex and poems.

December 20, 2011 \pm\31 2:54 pm

So I just spent a few hours at the Bodleian reading the Introduction to The Bloomsbury Guide to Erotic Literature, and flicking through its selection from the twentieth century, mainly the poetry. My Masters thesis is on contemporary American erotic poetry, so this makes sense. This anthology makes less effort than others to define what constitutes the ‘erotic’, though it does trace (somewhat predictably) the etymology of both erotica and pornography. The only criteria given is that there is no set criteria. Still, the contents were suitable. What I mean to say, is that, leaving the library and beginning my walk home I was supremely aware of how ridiculously aroused I was. But I smiled like it was a secret. I wanted to giggle the whole walk home. I didn’t feel anything like the wave of shame that so often breaks over you after consuming porn. Maybe because there wasn’t masturbation, this is a fair point. But I also think it might be something more than that. I’ve written other places about how pornography is most often a visual medium, and I think that visually consuming something gives the whole thing a much more visceral sense. I don’t mean to say the stuff I was reading wasn’t graphic, but there is a directness, a lack of mediation almost in visual mediums that means it is directly asserted. When you read erotic lit, you can, to some extent, turn it up or down in your imagination to fit your own desires. Or maybe, the secret smile comes from the fact that erotic poetry really is a secret—largely escaping censorship laws and purges because, as is sadly the case, poetry was assumed to be fodder only for a minority, and would not debase the minds of the masses.

What I want to know, I suppose, is it even worth having the debate about erotic / porn? Does a line exist?

And also, if anyone has secret stashes of erotic poetry, what poems are in it?

  1. December 21, 2011 \pm\31 2:20 pm 2:20 pm

    On that comes to mind is Linda Gregg’s “Let Birds.”

  2. December 21, 2011 \pm\31 3:37 pm 3:37 pm

    i am weirdly turned on by parts of lara glenum’s maximum gaga. and of course you know kendra malone and matt savoca? coupla sexy asses

  3. December 21, 2011 \pm\31 8:57 pm 8:57 pm

    they two sexy bitches

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