Sex and Death


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Do you remember when you first had sex?

I do! In fact, it is immortalised in my book of humorous erotica, ‘Come Laughing!‘ under the title ‘Sex and the Storm’ – though my poetic treatment of the story does not capture the full atmosphere of that night!

My deflowering was set against a violent tempest, with wind gasping in tandem with the two lovers and a cherry cheesecake, forgotten, lying on a side table. It was in part elemental, in part hilarious and wholly enjoyable.

So why, you may ask, bring death into the equation? Partly because we are often at our most radiantly alive when we are making the beast with two backs – and, in a very real sense, putting two fingers up at the Grim Reaper! Partly because orgasm is called, in French, ‘petit mort’ (little death) – and there is a strong element of swooning, dying, being reborn during the climax’s tornado.

But there is more to it, in my view: Whatever your religious or spiritual views concerning an Afterlife (and survival of the soul, or lack thereof), there is no denying the fact that the fleshly envelope containing all that we are disintegrates after death – and, thus, the use we make of that body during our all-too-brief lives counts for a hell of a lot.

Sex has always struck me as being the most multi-sensual activity a human can indulge in with that precious body. It encompasses sight, hearing, smell, touch and taste. With the right person, it is totally absorbing and can, albeit briefly, bond two into one.

It is an act both of procreation and creation, a wave of defiance to the inevitable, a confident assertion that life is to be quaffed, gulped, loved, fucked. It is the antithesis to the unlit lamp and the ungirt loin.

But it also operates independently of our squirrelly and distracting minds. The body’s urges are so strong that they get into gear whether the mental censor approves or not.

I was lucky: Naturally uninhibited and sensual, nobody ever told me that some women struggled with orgasm – and so I thought it absolutely normal when I experienced that tiny death the second time I had sex.

I was lucky: My mother, a woman ahead of her time, believed in educating her children about bodies and sex and love from the earliest age.

We none of us know for sure when the man – or, according to the late and lamented Terry Pratchett, skeleton – with the scythe will appear, and therefore I think it right that we make full, and varied, use of these bodies we have been gifted with.

What, after all, is the use of waiting for a Heaven which may not exist?

Live fully and joyously and sexily and lovingly NOW, I say! There is no such thing as tomorrow. We only have today.

Do you remember the last time you had sex?

Savour that wonderful antidote to death and decay, friends!

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