I should state right from the outset that I am on hiatus.
I think physical sex is overrated. This body with its strange protuberances puzzles me. Body parts wax and wane and shrink and swell and it’s embarrassing, frankly, dealing with their unleashed exuberance. I’m always the last to know, in a way: piecing together what the surges and secretions of hormones might mean, in terms of actual feelings.
Shutting all that down has been a relief. I placed an embargo around myself, a protective cordon sanitaire, and put all those complexities on hold, until the context in which it is all happening was clarified. When approached, I simply say now that I’m not available. And I don’t explain.
And now I look back on all the egoistic skirmishes and the rubbing up like dodgem cars on the surfaces of others’ features and skins, and try to consider the processes dispassionately. All the mess and the hysteria. The shyness and the granting of personal permission to access all areas. I think I know how men might feel, driven to excess by the priapic impulse.
I often felt in those days like I wanted to grab a partner and lay them down, or up against a wall, and conquer them - and yield. My wrists braceleted by strong fingers. The intuitive aligning of angles and curves, softness's and hardnesses, packs of muscle and yielding flesh. I am a field which has chosen to lie fallow in this artificial winter. But it is part of a long term strategy.
‘It’s warm as blood beneath the sods.’
I can see that my fellow human beings are moved to acts of incredible passion and destruction, by the fluctuations in their bodies. But if you restrain yourself and hold yourself accountable, the impulses and compulsions become simultaneously more intense and more refined.
Every chakra gets activated, every pleasure center gets prompted. You give more, you’re tapping into the molten core at last, infused with soul, ecstatic and ethereal. And so it makes sense to wait until everything is aligned. Waste not, want not. Who wants a trickle when you can have a fountain, in full flow?
I find it starts with me appreciating the homeostasis of my own being. The hundreds of insurgencies that are internally quelled, for the greater good of the whole system. I had no respect, when I was a young animal, for the sources of my wild energy.
Living like this, like a nun in a monastery, is more meaningful. It’s like measuring partners for a dance, or body parts for the sewing of a garment. Thinking: if I lay my forearm against his. Or hers. If I look and see how our skins contrast. If I see him throw his head back and laugh. And think of how our bodies could fit.
It’s under and inside every living thing, isn’t it? This pulse, which connects all life, in all its forms.
I would not have missed this experience, for anything.
Devika Brendon is an academic, editor, reviewer and columnist. Her poetry, short stories and reviews have been internationally published. She is currently Consultant Content Editor for the SEALA Global Leadership Network, and Senior Content Editor and Board Member of the New Ceylon Writing Literary Journal (established in 1970). Devika was Consultant Editor for FemAsia Magazine from its inception in 2018 to 2020, and a poetry editor for Girls On Key Publishing in 2020-21.