(Body Talk part 2: About Sex)
Final - Final thought.
Believe me, when you get to be my age – you'll get that monkey off your back – and then, there you are like a brain in a jar . (Charles McGinn, Dad-in-law age 73)
Oops, I have a final, final meditation. I guess it was inevitable. After seeing folks as walking snakes, or wind, or a spray of electric coral -- I am today thinking of folks as walking reproductive systems. Funny, how we always put this one last. I remember it this way in high school. Our Bio text had all the systems, from cardiovascular to digestive pressed into plastic overlays. But the reproductive part never made our androgynous acetate wo-Man. He, or it, had a baseball cup for genitalia. Guess they didn't want to commit the entire thing to gender. On the other hand, there were at the back of the text those drawings we always turned to study with our eyes bent and secret. But no matter how fast we read, our teacher never seemed to get there. But we found them in the back, and wondered what the girls thought when they saw our wares all pictured and out in the open. As it is, their diagram never seemed as revealing.
The male reproductive system looked something like the outline of Manhattan with all the balls and bent thing and tubes. And then there was this woman thing. Not the thing we longed to see (the interface) but this odd bag looking thing with wings. Or something like a moose head with antlers.
Just how this inner-floating bag interfaced with the outer was the subject of much inner musing. We saw the diagrams, but the interface just didn't makes sense ----
So now I think of us today, with our varied systems poking out of or poking into the intersection of leg and belly. I see us as either walking guns -- or walking flowers. (Sounds like the source for a Rock-n-Roll band)
I read somewhere that the male system of sexuality is pretty rudimentary and "primitive." Essentially, a fill and release proposition. There is, of course, a little more than this. Creation of the fuel, temperature sensitive storage, pipelines and stuff, even a special agent for mixing and transporting the fuel, but mostly this. Men are something of a gas pump: Storage tanks, line, nozzle or ... (Oh dear … load, cock, and fire. Bang!)
So that's what we are--guns with eyes, and fire in our brain. Tanks filled and brimming - stretched - Oh, when does the pressure end!
And then, these women. A different system entirely. A different universe. No easy two-point opposite. -- And I read this somewhere from some woman who said it in a much nicer way …if men are two steps, women are seven. (( I'm searching for the article))
The extra steps come with the moon, the cycle of ovulation. I'm not sure if I've got the steps right.
There is the letting go of a planet that was kept in her womb from birth. There is the odyssey -- the journey of the planet down the tube. There is the anchor at the shore in a kelp of blood. There is the dining and the waiting and building of water like a dam. There is the waiting.
Each egg or planet ... like a princess waiting for her suitors. And with it, this new energy and sexed-up rev on the part of the host. Should the princess find her suitor, some wholly other kind of cycle sets in. If not, the princess gives up and goes --and with her, the whole bloody banquet feast, set like a dinner for a possible child. The dam-burst and the whole flotilla of bloody food and wash and planet is swept to sea.
I read somewhere else that each male is a throbbing tumor; each woman, an open wound.
And so, now, I think of each woman as something of a "U" turned upside down. They are like diving bells; we may see the outer, but up and under is a great void. The womb reaching in and up like a lifted balloon. The essence of womanhood wrapped around a hidden cave. A flower blooming inward…
I remember watching, some years ago, the formation of an apple. It started with a blossom -- some weird double-sexed outcrop. Stamen (the male part) surrounded a sticky pistol. Something like a tube attached to a bulb.
Down the neck of the tube were the waiting seeds. Following pollination, the flesh around the seeds began to swell and take on apple mass. In the first days of growth the blossom could still be seen on the outer edge, and what would become the bottom of the apple. In fact, if you look hard at the bottom an apple, you can still find remnants of the petal, or the very five-fold division of the flower.
So now, today, I think of women as flowers, but with the pistol built back and in -- with this most elaborate edifice. Instead of some petals or even apple flesh is this whole other flesh -- a flower that bursts out with the garnish of arms ... and head and hair ... and legs ... and teeth.
(Okay - I can see it with my mind, but maybe not describe it)
Today the women are walking -- each one, walking like a hidden flower -- each one, somewhere in the cycle of an elaborate dance. Some are wounded, or waiting, or building for the next trip. And it isn't just their bodies that go for the ride. If a man's brain is hot-wired to his testes, I think of a woman's reproductive self twined into her whole emotive self. It is in her mood, in her brain, in her eyebrow, in her gait, in her shout, in her coy, in her wink, in her chaotic thinking, in her striving, in her wanting. And when that mood goes bad -- Dear, these women are crazy, I think!
But not just then (at the time of her period). There is in this task of mothering that gets into their entire personality. Her balance is lower, her feet on the earth. She spies the ground and its terrors...her ears are spinning like radar, her countenance fierce with protecting against the enemy. And before her strut her breasts, like an ever-present testimony to feeding the human race.
As a male I am prone to latch onto these external fixtures of womanhood. I spy the curve, and wish for a moment to be a child tucked in the overhang ... to frolic in the lilies. But this -- these breasts and curves, and the washing of blood...and her fierce eyes - like a mother bear waiting to claw or maim if needed -- are welded onto her soul. Her sex is not just the outer, but the whole inner-sculpt.
Today I see the people walking ...some of them like spring-loaded traps or cocked guns -- horses straining at the bit -- the ever-building pressure -- storage tanks or draw bridges or erector sets. Or these, the walking wombs -- the fruited tubes, the swelling breasts, or the deep-welled flower -- the confusing blend of impulse -- the begging to fill the flower -- the wanting with the eyes for us to be like hummingbirds visiting the flowers -- a desire at once to be filled or to feed the planet, a desire to cast us away, a desire to kill all men, or lunge like a self-protecting blizzard.
Silly song: "Oh blizzards and guns - don't we have fun!"
The pistol of a flower is its only protection against insects. (Unknown kid quote)