Robert Browning (1812-1889)

Out of your whole life give but one moment! 
All of your life that has gone before, 

All to come after it, – so you ignore, 

So you make perfect the present, – condense, 

In a rapture of rage, for perfection’s endowment, 

Thought and feeling and soul and sense – 

Merged in a moment which gives me at last 

You around me for once, you beneath me, above me – 

Me – sure that despite of time future, time past, – 

This tick of our life-time’s one moment you love me! 

How long such suspension may linger? Ah, Sweet – 

The moment eternal – just that and no more – 

When ecstasy’s utmost we clutch at the core 

While cheeks burn, arms open, eyes shut and lips meet! 


Eroticism in Archery Photography and Art

By Charles Moffat - January 2015.

I find it fascinating how people like to combine erotic imagery with archery - usually with scantily clad or nude women, and rarely ever men in poses that look more like classic pin ups. Like the images below.

Pin up art is relatively tame by modern standards.

This piece is more about youthful athleticism then it is erotic.

This photograph is so tame she is even wearing fancy shoes.

Whereas this image looks like something out of "Mad Max".

Some images show a complete lack of archery knowledge.

A fancy dress and an expensive compound bow, it doesn't even match.

Again the lack of archery knowledge, this time for a fashion shoot.

In comparison these men look like that don't whether they are supposed to shoot the bow or stroke it. Penis envy?

Archery was in vogue back in the 1950s, and it was the rise of the male pin up model.

And last but not least this is a male model / bodybuilder from the 1950s/60s who often did nude poses of himself with archery equipment. He did so many nude archer poses it became known as his specialty.


Eroticism in Art History = Awkward?

November 2014.

So I was browsing art history books on Amazon when I came across the book "Erotic Art: An Annotated Bibliography with Essays" by Eugene C. Burt, as seen below.

And as you can see, judging by the cover, it is quite possibly the least sexy book about erotic art you will ever see.

396 pages of essays about erotic art - quite possibly without even showing erotic art.

The white tag on the cover makes me think it was stolen from a library and someone is trying to sell it. Hence why there are 6 used copies available.

It got me thinking about how awkward it must be sometimes for university students to be writing essays on the topic of erotic art and then having to submit their essay to their possibly ugly professor. Or maybe the professor is totally hot and looks like Tom Selleck or Cindy Crawford (you know, once they got older, but still very attractive).

I can only guess some students will feel mightily embarrassed about handing in their essay about eroticism in the art work of [insert artist name here]. It could even lead to awkward silences or awkward conversations.

(Although to be fair I think the awkwardness would be even worse if someone was caught using a plagiarized essay from an essay writing company and then got kicked out of their university for academic dishonesty.)

I have a feeling students might feel more comfortable about talking about sex in art / eroticism in art if the professor swore once in awhile. A few F-words here and there might allow students to relax a bit more and be able to talk about eroticism without all the embarrassment.

Or maybe some of them will be like many typical (or stereotypical) university students and be drunk / stoned / sex-crazed maniacs in their early 20s who can eloquently talk about "the money shot" in pornography as if they were discussing 18th century French literature. With no awkwardness at all.

The type of people I have no doubt would get along with Flavio and Alexandra, the authors of "How to Read Erotic Art". I have a hunch, just guessing, but my hunch is that Flavio and Alexandra were dating (or maybe have an open relationship) when they were writing their book.

"How to Read Erotic Art" is just one of many books on this topic, but according to description it does go into depth into the idea of how interpret erotic art and possibly also how to talk about erotic art. It therefore might be one of the few books which 'breaks the ice' or 'kills the elephant in the room' when it comes to talking about erotic art.

Most people after all just sort of awkwardly stare at erotic art and then look away embarrassed. When asked what they liked about it they respond with something generic. "It was, uh, very realistic." or "I liked the symbolism."

Erotic art books often become top sellers and yet surprisingly most people only look at the pictures and never "read" the book in question. You should, in theory, do both just so you learn more from the book and garner all the knowledge that is to be learned on the topic you paid money for.

There are 1,225 books, art history books, graphic novels, manga and more on the topic of 'erotic art history' on Amazon.com. If I use eroticism instead of erotic, the list is reduced to 78 - and includes everything from paintings to pottery to Pompeii frescoes.

It is a big long list. The type of books you expect to see on the coffee table in your aunt's condo - you know, the aunt who never married and brings a new man to Christmas gatherings every year. And each year the men seem to get younger. (Another stereotype, huzzah!)

The same aunt who gave you "the talk" when you were 15 and was later scolded by your parents for overstepping her boundaries as an aunt. The same aunt who made raunchy jokes you didn't get when you were younger but now think are hysterical. The same aunt who gave you a giant box of condoms and an "how to guide" when you went off to university and just smiled and drank her wine when the other relatives just looked aghast and awkward.

If you managed to survive having an aunt like that, chances are likely you are surprisingly well adjusted, well-informed and "adult" when it comes to all things dealing with sex and eroticism. You probably didn't get your liberal-mindedness from your parents.

And if you've managed to read this post all the way to the bottom, you are most definitely liberal minded.


Feverish Kisses

By Charles Moffat

I dreamt of her again last night.

When we first kisses it was sweet and tender, almost by accident.

But every kiss after that was more feverish than the last.

It had been so long since we had last seen each other.

We have both changed so much since then.

But the old flame still burns strong inside us.

I cannot change the way things are.

Nor can I change the way I feel about you.

The brief moments we are together, even in my dreams, make it all worthwhile.

Mayhaps you are dreaming of me too.

The same dream. The same feverish kisses.


Blossoms of Love

Blossoms of Love
Nay shall people say that your love doth not shine
For it shines like all the heavens after a glass of fine wine

Nay shall people say that your love does not blossom
For it has already bloomed and that is totally awesome

Nay shall people say that your eyes do wander
For your eyes have become blind to what others have to offer

Nay shall people say that your love is whimsical
For your love shows true character and has grown full circle

Nay shall people say that your love shall be nevermore
For your love shall grow thanks to the fruits of your labour


Dream Flirting


I have just awoken from an interesting dream wherein I was flirting with my wife.

It was bizarre for multiple reasons.

#1. I am not married. I don't even know the woman in my dream.

#2. I have never flirted in a dream before. Clothes ripping sex, yes, but flirting? Nope!

Essentially I was visiting my wife at her office where she was working at hiring a new secretary. One of her secretary candidates was a real "go getter", willing to do almost anything to get the job - to the point that she sounded a bit insane.

After the secretaries all left my wife and I started talking about the different candidates, and then we started joking what-if I, her husband, were to become her male secretary.

"Oh but then I wouldn't be able to keep my hands off of you," my wife joked.

I think I recall blushing in the dream.

"And think of all the running around we'd have to do, having sex on desks, in stationary closets, in the break room."

And that was really the extent of the dream. My wife (who doesn't exist) and I joking about hypothetical sex at the office, with her husband playing the role of male secretary.

Now I haven't had any aspirations previously to be someone else's secretary. Never even crossed my mind. I probably wouldn't be bad at it, I do know how to answer the phone, make appointments, type really fast... but it hasn't really been a career aspiration.

And it still isn't.

I am more interested in the part of the dream where I am married to a sexually imaginative and flirtatious woman who finds me so highly desirable that she can't keep her hands off me.

On the eroticism scale this dream wasn't even arousing, but it was highly thought provoking when I woke up this morning. (And thus my sudden urge to write about it.)

That is what makes it so unusual. It wasn't a dream about sex, it was a dream about flirting about sex.

The talking about sex was more interesting than the act.

Which begs the question, if talking about sex can be that interesting (in the same way that erotic novels are interesting), why aren't people making films wherein they just talk about sex - without actually showing anything explicit.

That would be a mind-blowing experiment in erotic film making, I admit.

It would be taking the concept of "less is more" to the extreme and letting viewers imagine all the naughty bits. A bit like how lingerie is more provocative than no clothes at all, because it leaves everything to the imagination.


Salsa Suite

Salsa Suite by Gail M. Murray, circa 2006.
Member of the Toronto Poetry Club.

It begins
slowly, easily
as friendship.

They meet in salsa class
over hardwood floors, beads of sweat
and sensuous latin music.

The students dance in a circular rotation.
“Switch partners” the dance instructor calls.
He’s coming towards her
She looks forward to dancing with him.
He makes her laugh,
teases incessantly
witty repartee and latin rhythms.
She flushes, eyes averted.

Then one night after class
his impromptu invitation
“Would you like to go for coffee?”
to his place.
She trusts this one
his passion for photography and artistic city scapes
let her in a little.

Again, spur of the moment
a Lennon tribute night
bohemian poets and coffee house cappuccino
more stories, histories
conversation easy,
getting to know each other.

Then he tempts the traveler in her
“Will you go to Cuba with me, leave Boxing Day?”
That’s a week away
She doesn’t know him
He’s still a mystery, pieces she’s putting together
so they watch the DVD
of forbidden lovers who share dance and each other
Havana Nights she wants to live with him.

Still, no touching
that’s only safe on the dance floor

At salsa class it’s always there
the verbal banter, constant flirtation and comfort.

What is she to him?
seems more than friendship
not so easy now.

Phone calls from the road
from Edmonton and Vancouver
He travels with his work
tells he’s been jogging,
describes his business dinner.

Victoria Day weekend
his unexpected late night call
he’s en route from a family function at the Falls
good thing he owns a cell phone.

He arrives unshaven
toting vinegary wine
to catch up on her recent trip to Arizona
or flame surfacing desire?

He’s at ease in her recliner
massaging her taut shoulders
taking her to a different reality.
He plays with her long hair
such an erotic thing
a man’s hands stroking your hair.

Sliding into his arms, she curls up
‘His gentleness came down upon her’
Kisses, tender kisses
sweet surprise from a jock
who keeps a gym regimen
races dragon boats and kick boxes.

He transmits tenderness
“It’s you” he whispers
“You bring it out in a man”.
“Did you think we’d….?” she asks
“There’s always been something between us”.
They’re crossing bridges.

In summer sunlight , arm in arm
strolling cliffs along the lake
still easy.
Until he says “there’s good news and sad news”
“You’re moving” she senses it
all this work related travel
Two hours away
difficult, not impossible for a man in love
He’s fast tracking, climbing corporate ladders
Different dreams.

Why did he start crossing bridges?
‘Her blue eyes could melt his soul down to a place it longed to be.’
Dancers spin to a pumping meringue beat
“I thought I’d surprise you,” he says a little cocky
Since the move, she hadn’t expected to see him at salsa
“I can come for dinner next Friday, I’m in town.
Is that enough notice for you?”

Twilight approaches
her garden blooms soft rose hues
He’s only two hours late
driving across the city through rush hour
Is planning in his scope?
He’s missed business flights before.

Scents of vanilla and wild salmon mingle on the patio
It’s dark, chilly now
Time to venture indoors
Kissing, stroking, crossing further….
He’s behaving like a lover
He asks her to dance
Not latin music this time.

Slow, close, not like dance class
More Bridges of Madison County
Is he sensitive to her or does he know how to play her?

He’s good with romantic gestures
as he sweeps her into his arms
carries her upstairs
crossing the threshold.

This lover awakens with tender sensuality
at dawn they stir, his arms enfold

He plants a single kiss on her shoulder
They drift back to sleep
then he’s in her kitchen making breakfast.

It’s her turn to drive the distance to his salsa barbecue
“It’s so far” she sighs
Is this a message she’s trying to deny?
Tiki candles, latin music, dancing with the gang from salsa class
mastering new dance combinations
though she wants to dance with him, solo.

His new house has five bedrooms.
“Which bed has my name on it?” she asks coyly.
“Where are you planning to sleep?” she blushes
“With you.”
“Not if the party goers drink too much and stay over” she says.
She has her reputation to think about.
She still attends dance class.

Candlelight, blue sheets
piped in music from his laptop
Poet meets techie.

He opens to her
thoughts, feelings
in this dawn pillow talk.
“Her blue eyes melted his soul down to the place
where it longed to be.”