In light of all the controversy surrounding the comments made J.K. Rowling about sex, sexuality, gender, and transfolk, I thought it would be appropriate to post this story from our first book, Match, Cinder & Spark, Volume I: Nymphomania and the Single Girl.
“You’re such a man,” I said to Lo, “and I love it.” That was Monday morning. We had spent a wild weekend in Manhattan and now our sleeping rhythms were all askew. She awoke at around three in the a.m. and she was having trouble falling back to sleep. I eventually awoke to her right hand rhythmically rubbing her clit under the blankets and her hips slowly gyrating up and down on the mattress. Her breathing grew more rapid and she began to make little moans, like a cat purring. Eventually her quick breaths elongated into heavy sighs and the gyrations grew to rhythmic pulses as she whispered, “God, God, yes, God,” to herself. And then, like going from fifth gear to neutral, she was back to her silent, still self. But not for long. Within fifteen or twenty minutes she was at it again. And again. And again. And then one last time just before the sun rose. When we both awoke at seven, I said to her, “I counted five times you came last night.” She responded with, “I was trying to fall asleep.” That’s when I told her that she is such a man.
Or so it seems to me. That is to say that the effect that orgasm has on men — I find, and Lola has corroborated this for me with her wide experience — is to suffuse their brains with dopamine, thus resembling a person high on opiates. The male of the species gets calm, relaxed, and inadvertently drifts off into a pleasant dreamlike state after the intoxicated rush of an orgasm. Lo, on the other hand, after orgasm, needs more — like a crack addict who experiences a brief high but knows that with another round the high can be even more intense. Her need for the fleshy needle of her drug of choice spikes and she becomes manic with a feverish search for the next fix. It is only after numerous injections that she is finally able to (briefly) experience a calming satiation.
There is another cosmic joke that is played out in the biological and psychological interaction of the sexes. Scientists have discovered that semen has a depression-combating effect upon women — whether the means of reception is internal through mouth or another orifice, or through external absorption on the skin. But, in the male the loss of semen, sperm, and testosterone (I believe and many ancient texts support this theory) can lead to depression. I, myself, suffer from frequent swings of the pendulum between manic activity and melancholic states. I have found, through keen observation and recordkeeping of my mental temperature, that the longer I refrain from ejaculation, the higher and more vibrant my mood. But the more of my vital fluids I secrete, the lower, deeper, and darker my depressions hit. Thus nature has conspired to keep women wanting men’s anti-depressive juices and men at odds with both their biological instincts and the instincts of women in order to hoard this natural high-inducing drug in their bodies.
To this end I have, with the help and instruction of Lo, been practicing the ancient art of tantric yoga. This lore, spanning back some three thousand years or more, teaches the secret of multiple male orgasms, or as I call it, “internal orgasm.” This is the ability to reach a climax without any ejaculation of semen. With this technique I can simultaneously give my Lo the numerous climaxes she seeks while retaining my own chi (in Chinese), prana (in Sanskrit), or vital energies. I firmly believe that this retaining of the drops of pearly white male milk is what the Vedas referred to as the mysterious bliss-inducing drug soma and the secret to the gods Shiva and Dionysus being always aroused, never satiated. Just look at the famous images of the Sileni on Greek vases with their erect phalli. That was their secret to their smiles.
But even this centuries old technique is not enough to keep my Lo’s libido in a state of contentment. When we make love — even though she taught me how to retain my fluids and despite being well aware of the consequences of draining me of my treasured white oil — she often engages in the erotic art like a crusader out to drain the sacred challis of its divine contents. She is not satisfied till she has elicited from between my legs the coveted fluid. And even then she relishes only for a mere moment in the dripping hot mess of her victory before grabbing at one of her dildos and sneaking off into the shower for one or two more earth-shattering orgasms while I lie limp and loopy on the bed.
Yet the truth of the matter is more complex and convoluted than has been characterized above. With sex and sexuality it’s never so simple as male/female, man/woman, masculine/feminine or any other seemingly clearly dichotomous relationship. The ancients knew this full well. Thus Shiva is often depicted as half male and half female — having one voluptuous breast on one side and a hard, firm pectoral on the other. Dionysus is similarly said to have been androgynous and to have inspired “his” supplicants to cross the gender line. What this mythological imagery alludes to is that Lo, despite all her feminine allure, really is a man. And I, for all my masculinity, am well aware of my feminine attraction to her manliness. Again, the ancient Taoists were attuned to this when they depicted the feminine Yin as being within the masculine Yang, and vice-versa in the iconic Yin-Yang symbol. And moderns such as Jung described this psychological interpenetration and expressed it as “the shadow side” or the anima-animus dialectic. There’s nothing new here and the continued interplay of these two poles provides endless wonder and joy in the game we call by the names of sex, sexuality, gender, and the dialectical dance of Same and Different.
In this sense there is no such thing as “trans-gender.” By that I mean, the possibility of transcending gender in terms of the dichotomy between imminent and transcendent. Rather, all there is is inhabiting genders. An embodied soul can intimately and imminently inhabit a gender or, more realistically, many genders simultaneously or in succession. We don’t usually think of ourselves in this way because we are constrained so often by the constructs of our society that want our “selves” to fit neatly in the prefabricated boxes of their categorical understanding, such as: SEX: MALE or FEMALE. What if I answered “Yes” instead of one or the other? That would be a more accurate response. But just because the group-think defines us (that is, limits us in terms of their limited understanding), that does not mean that that is who or what we are, nor should we think of ourselves in the little terms readymade by little minds.