Friday, 24 April 2015
Eric Keys’ book; “For the Glory,” will shock and disturb you. It is meant to. It’s a bdsm story; it’s hot, it’s very, very sexy – it also has a 19 year old protagonist with a vile attitude. Ilsa is violently, irrepressibly anti-Semitic.
“Ilsa was driven by rage when she met Saul. He was everything she despised, but he saw something more in her. But does he have the determination to break through Ilsa's defenses? And more importantly, does Ilsa have the strength to let him?”
Eric Keys puts words in Ilsa’s mouth; words that will make you cringe – people don’t say such things…do they? Not now; not in the second decade of the 21st century. We don’t have bad thoughts like that anymore; we are enlightened, charitable; we have learnt how to celebrate difference. Well, if the attitude of Soccer fans is anything to go by, they most certainly do – news reports tell us that anti-Semitism is rife within the Soccer fans world. Both here in the U.K. and across Europe – particularly Eastern Europe.
I think that Ilsa’s profanities are doubly shocking, because she is so young – she is also very beautiful. The impact is the same as when we hear a 3 year old say the “F” word.
Why is Eric Keys giving Ilsa such a terrible, terrifying ideology?
So when Ilsa is seduced into being a submissive to the Jewish, Dominant Saul, it comes as a surprise for the reader – she begins by insulting him – I’m not going to tell you how it ends – all I will say is that if you don’t believe that you can be aroused by the written word – think again.
But it’s the anti-Semitism that intrigues me. Why has Eric Keys put it there? What’s the point?
A friend of mine, Anthony, went to Austria on a skiing holiday earlier this year. He took a taxi from the airport to his resort. He has spent time in Germany and wanted to practice his language skills, so he talked to the taxi driver in German. Taxi drivers love to talk – and this one certainly did. How everyone hates the Jews, how the Jews lost the First World War for Germany, how there is a banking conspiracy for Jews to take over the world. Fat Jews, Jews with big noses – every stereotype you can think of.
And that’s why, I think, Erik Keys has put anti-Semitism into his book – he knows that it is still there; lurking like a cancer – over the centuries, over the millennia – stepping stones of hatred that almost made Hitler’s “Final Solution” a reality.
Genocide – the total extermination of the Jews – it almost happened in the ovens of Auschwitz and Belsen. Could it happen again? What do you think?
Here are some extracts from email exchanges with Eric Keys…
(billierosie) I get hatred but I don't get racism...particularly anti-Semitism; how a whole race of people can be so hated, that they should be wiped off the face of the earth..
(Eric Keys) It is hard to get your head around racism or anti-Semitism. For years it was all a mystery to me. Then I saw a documentary about the Nazis - I think it was called Architecture of Doom - and it all started to gel. Up till then Nazism was scary but alien. But after seeing this film I saw it as even scarier because it started to make sense to me. The Nazi propaganda machine worked by getting people to think they were involved in this giant drama. At the time they thought of it in terms of opera, but we might see it more as a gigantic cycle of novels - Song of Fire and Ice or the Hunger Games or something. Or maybe movies - Star Wars? Anyway, it was only then that I saw the appeal and it scared me a million times more than it did before.
But it also fascinated me. So, I read lots of articles about white supremacy, etc. Scary, scary stuff...
I tried to exorcise it through Ilsa.
(billierosie; talking about my review) ) I hope it's okay that I concentrated on Ilsa's anti-semitism..I know it's inextricably linked to the bdsm..in your book, but it's the hatred of the Jews thing that stood out to me...particularly as you'd told me about your own ethnicity.
(Eric Keys) That's fine that you concentrate on Ilsa's anti-semitism. It's part of what fascinated me about her. I've had this crazy fascination on and off for years. I seriously considered not putting it in there, but she's the heart of the story and her hatred is such a deep part of who she was and where she came from. I sort of expected people would not get over that, but since the reviews have been overwhelmingly positive so I guess people were willing to either stick it out or they haven't been bothered enough to write a review.
Visit Eric Keys’ blog here
For the Glory is at Amazon US And at Amazon UK
Check out also; Mstislav: Vengeance and Glory – also by Eric Keys. At Amazon US and at Amazon UK
Friday, 17 April 2015
Félicien Rops was a Belgian artist, specialising in printmaking, etching and aquatint. He lived from July 1833 until August 1898. He trained at the University of Brussels and his work was part of, and complimented the literary movement, illustrating Symbolism and Decadence.
Although the movements of Symbolism and Decadence can be considered to be similar in one respect, the two remain distinct..
Decadence was the name given, originally by hostile critics, to several late nineteenth-century writers, who valued artifice more than the earlier Romantics naïve descriptions. Some of them adopted the name, referring to themselves as "Decadents". For the most part, they were influenced by the tradition of the Gothic novel and by the poetry and fiction of Edgar Allan Poe.
In Britain the main person associated with Decadence was Oscar Wilde.
Rops’ forté was drawing, more than painting in oils; he first won fame as a caricaturist. He experimented with a distinctive printmaking technique called "soft varnish" which resulted in an image that was very close to drawing, eventually mastering the technique after years of experimentation. He sketched incessantly and feverishly.
Like the works of the authors whose poetry he illustrated his work tends to mingle sex, death, and satanic images.
Rops met Charles Baudelaire towards the end of the poet's life in 1864, and Baudelaire left an impression upon him that lasted until the end of his days. Rops’ created the frontispiece for Baudelaire's Les Épaves, a selection of poems from Les Fleurs du mal that had been censored in France, and which therefore were published in Belgium.
Rops’ association with Baudelaire and with the art he represented, won his work the admiration of many other writers, including Théophile Gautier, Alfred de Musset, Stéphane Mallarmé, Jules Barbey d’Aurevilly, and Joséphin Péladan.
But let’s look at the art and see if we can fathom what critics and supporters of Rops’ were talking about.
Pornocrates by Félicien Rops.Etching and aquatint.
The etching has a defiantly pornographic tone. An almost naked, blindfolded, curvaceous woman, is led by a fat swine from somewhere, to nowhere. Cherubs flit like butterflies in misty blue. It is an image from a dream, tipping over into a nightmare. The erotica is explicit. Yes -- the woman is almost naked, but the few clothes she wears emphasise the helplessness of her situation.
Yet, she is dressed in garments that suggest that she is in control. Heeled shoes, long, opera gloves and sexy stockings. The silken blue sash emphasises her nudity. It is a work of art for the voyeur; there is a feeling that it is staged, that the subject wants to be seen in her decadent glory. Perhaps she is saying; “look at me!”
Or is this a pornographic fantasy that the woman is determined to see through, despite stepping into the realms of the taboo? The little tipping hat that she wears, suggests that she is someone of consequence; the dream symbolism is perhaps telling us something about ourselves. she has given up control, but she is in control.
It seems that Rops is illustrating the theories of Freud and Jung. No matter how hard we try to suppress our darkest thoughts, no matter our place in the social scale, our darkest desires will surface in art, fantasies and dreams; the stories that we tell.
In a letter to his friend Henri Liesse, Rops described the painting:
"My Pornocratie is complete. This drawing delights me. I would like to show you this beautiful naked girl, clad only in black shoes and gloves in silk, leather and velvet, her hair styled. Wearing a blindfold she walks on a marble stage, guided by a pig with a "golden tail" across a blue sky. Three loves - ancient loves - vanish in tears. I did this in four days in a room of blue satin, in an overheated apartment, full of different smells, where the opopanax and cyclamen gave me a slight fever conducive towards production or even towards reproduction". --Letter from Rops to Henri Liesse, 1879.
Whereas many artists of the time might hint at a fashionable blasphemy or satanism, Rops’ dealings with these subjects were unequivocal, as was the blatant, pornographic tone of many of his drawings.
In this parody of the crucifixion Rops is being deliberately shocking to the lecherous edge of perversity. The contorted body of the Christ figure, has goat’s legs and feet. He looks down at the woman beneath; his expression is agonising. There is pain, and something else; depravity. More than decadence, the work expresses a raw, rapacious lust, that doesn’t know where to stop. The creature’s phallus rests upon the woman’s cheek; she is bound to the figure by some sort of strap. Her pose reflects that of the crucifixion, more so than that of the figure on the cross. The scarlet backdrop signifies corruption.
“Calvary” is brutal; insolent. Rops does not care about the viewer’s sensibilities; and why should he? He is being deliberately provocative. You don’t have to look, but he dares you to. If you were to challenge him, I think that his response would be; “well so what”! He is in the business of shocking and here he takes the sentimental, traditional view of the Passion of Christ, and shows it for the blasphemy and obscenity that it is.
It still has pathos, you can see it in the tortured grimaces. But it’s a work about sex and death; sex and religion. In particular I think that it is an exposition of the Roman Catholic tradition of faith and sacrifice. The life of dedication that Catholicism exhorts from the blindly faithful.
THE TEMPTATION OF SAINT ANTHONY
Saint Anthony kneels at the lectern, one bony leg outstretched as if in preparation to flee. He needs a place of security, far away from the horrors of blasphemy. His hands attempt to shield his ears from the raucous din. The figure on the cross compounds the blasphemy; it is the figure of a young, voluptuous woman, her soft, yielding breasts thrusting forwards towards the baffled saint. “Eros” replaces “Inri” at the pinnacle of the cross. The banished Christ is on her right, on her left, a ragged demon, behind the cross a swine stares intently, his forelegs raised. Tiny skeletonised demons flit like bats in the darkening sky. Can Saint Anthony resist the allure of the image? The image that so brutally usurps the Christian message.
The violent image seems to have occurred as the Saint turns the pages of the scriptures. Looking closely, I think that I can see the banishment of Adam and Eve, the first sinners. Perhaps this is encouraging Anthony to hold fast to his faith.
The earliest paintings to employ the scene were Italian frescos of the 10th century. The later European Middle Ages saw accumulation of the theme in book illumination and later in German woodcuts. About 1500 originated the famous paintings of Martin schöngauer (ca. 1490), Hieronymus Bosch (ca. 1505) and Mathias Grünewald (ca. 1510). In the modern era the theme has been treated by the Spanish painter Salvador Dalí and the French author Gustave Flaubert, who considered his 1874 bookThe Temptation of saint Anthony to be his master work.
PIC "La Buveuse d Absinthe"
“Félicien Rops drew "La Buveuse d Absinthe" (meaning specifically the female absinthe drinker) in 1865 at the age of around 32 and frequently afterwards drew the same subject over the next 30 years. The picture always shows a slender woman leaning against a pillar outside a dance-hall, her low neckline and fine dress showing she is part of the nightlife. Her insouciant attitude, accompanied by her staring eyes, slightly opened mouth and haggard expression suggesting that she is a prostitute. She became the archetype of the female absinthe drinker.”
“Joris-Karl Huysmans, writer of A Rebours (meaning 'against the grain'), often said to be the supreme expression of the decadent spirit, described Rops’ absinthe drinker:
“M. Rops has created a type of woman that we will dream of, dream of again and be drawn back to, the type of absinthe drinker who, brutalised and hungry, grows ever more menacing and more voracious, with her face frozen and empty, villainous and hard, with her limpid eyes with a look as fixed and cruel as a lesbian's, with her mouth a little open, her nose regular and short ... the girl bitten by the green poison leans her exhausted spine on a column of the bal Mabille and it seems that the image of syphilitic Death is going to cut short the ravaged thread of her life.”
“On exhibition of his absinthe drinker at the International Exhibition of Fine Art in his home town of Namur in Belgium, Rops felt himself "spat upon": The picture outraged the critics and the local civic establishment issued an official rebuke to the artist, who 'far from consecrating his talent to the reproduction of gracious and elegant works, prostitutes his pencil complacently to the reproduction of scenes imprinted with a repellent realism”.
With unconcealed glee at this notoriety, Rops wrote to his friend Jean d'Ardenne how his La Buveuse d'Absinthe blew the minds ('les têtes... s'epanouissaient') of his bourgeois countrymen.'
Two women rage in an orgy of carnal lust. Cunnilingus, tongues, lips, teeth, juices. The image tells a story of how women are able to feel about sex, there is the potential for women to feel earthy, feral, rather than the sanitised presentation of the erotica in the tradition of Ingres. Women can be active, not simply passive recipients. The image is raw, primal and urgent. Their need is overpowering and overwhelming. There is nothing about making love in this drawing and it is as far away from Gustave Courbet’s tender image of “The Sleepers” as you can get. Rops’ depiction of women having sex is about possibilities; the possibility for women to indulge totally in the dark side of desire.
Well, to me, it’s a celebration of life, of sexuality in all of its guises. The woman has an erect penis; or does the man have voluptuous breasts? It doesn’t matter; contorted figures writhe in blatantly sexual poses at the base of the picture. Is the artist saying; “It doesn’t matter what your sexual proclivity is, just do it?”
In his prolific body of work, Rops demonstrates that posterity favours the forthright and the unique over uniformity and compromise.
Like the works of the authors whose poetry he illustrated, his work tends to mingle sex, death, and satanic images in a way which shocked many of his contemporaries and is sometimes disturbing even today.
There can be no doubt that Félicien Robs adored sex and he adored women; their taste, their scent, their texture. His adoration is reflected in his work. In a poignant letter to Louise Danse he opens up about his personal insecurities.
“ Each time autumn arrives with its austere intoxications, I suffer as if every hope that I carry within me and which are the same as those that illuminated my twentieth year were going to expire forever along with the dead leaves. I am so afraid of being old and of no longer being able to inspire love in a woman, which is a true death for a man of my nature, and with my needs for madness of mind and body.”
Thanks to Jan Vander Laenen for introducing the artist to me, and suggesting this post.
Friday, 10 April 2015
My husband looks at pornography while he’s taking care of our baby girl...Annalisa Barbieri advises...
I can’t understand how he could do this – should I seek a divorce? Annalisa Barbieri advises a reader...
I have been with my husband for five years and we have just had a baby. He has always used pornography and he has quite specialist sexual tastes. At the start of our relationship, he was very honest and we tried to incorporate this into our sex life quite successfully.
However, over recent years, his use of pornography and masturbation has come at the expense of our sex life. He rarely instigates lovemaking yet masturbates and uses porn daily. He will look at it on his phone when I am in another room.
He also confessed recently that he had been masturbating to porn at work.
Things came to a head with our new baby; he would hold her and still have his phone with him. I asked him not to look at porn when he was with the baby. He said of course not, but over the following weeks would still constantly have his phone with him when looking after her. Last week, he admitted he was looking at porn while he was looking after our daughter.
I was horrified and there were rows and tears. He was very sorry and ashamed and I have pushed him to go to counselling. I cannot move forward until I understand how he could do this.
I am angry and ashamed of his behaviour. We did have a very good relationship outside of his porn problems; it was loving, respectful and supportive but now I fear I can never see him in a sexual way again as I am haunted by the image of him making himself sexually aroused with our sleeping daughter feet away from him.
He disgusts and sexually repulses me and has shown himself to be a very weak man; he either knew it was wrong and yet did not have the strength of character to stop or he did not think it is wrong, in which case he does not have the same moral code as me and thus I am wary of co-parenting our daughter if our moral values are so far apart.
I do not want to be a single mother but even with counselling I think I can never see him in a positive sexual way again. He has tainted our child by bringing the adult world into her innocent life, even though she was unaware of what was happening.
Should I seek divorce or try to save my marriage? He refuses to give up his porn collection completely but since this came to crisis point he has at least cut down on his daily use.
Annalisa Barbieri’s response
I’m taking it for granted that his “specialist tastes” don’t involve child abuse images (nothing you said in your longer letter led me to believe this), because, obviously, my advice then would be completely different.
In cultures where parents co-sleep with their babies/children, people do have sex with sleeping babies in the same room. But that’s not what this is about. I understand how you must feel, not least because you are in that new mother “babymoon” stage, and your husband has introduced something very adult into it.
I consulted Vanessa Oliver, a psychotherapist who works with people with addictions. She thinks it sounds as if your husband has an addiction. “Sex addiction is known as an intimacy disorder and can be very, very isolating,” she says. “Addiction is often used to anaesthetise feelings that may have been repressed for years. The addict may not even be aware of what they are any more.”
Addictions are powerful, compulsive and complex, and it really may not be as easy as your husband simply promising not to do something any more. He needs specialist help.
The worry – in the short term – is not so much what your husband is looking at/doing but that he is doing it to such a degree that his attention isn’t focused on the baby when he is in sole charge of her. I would address this first. Your main priority is you and your baby’s mental and physical wellbeing.
Oliver has worked with couples in very similar situations to yours and she emphasises not to do anything drastic.
“You will be in shock. Don’t panic, don’t do anything reactive. You need time to come to terms with this.”
Oliver also suggests getting individual support, as well as joint support. (But if your husband doesn’t want to get help, please don’t let that stop you.) In therapy, a specialised counsellor will work with your husband to find out what is behind his addiction.
Article from the Guardian newspaper; Friday, 13th March 2015
The image is one of an actor.
Friday, 3 April 2015
“It was the nuns at my school that got me interested in people’s sexuality. The swinging sixties were going on outside, but we were cloistered together as we boiled and bubbled our way through puberty. I’d write about it, except we were all under eighteen, so I’d end up in court.
“The experiences didn’t harm me in the slightest, but later on they made me realise that there isn’t a clear distinction between ‘straight’ and ‘gay’, or between ‘normal’ and ‘kinky’. We’re all capable of bending our personal rules if the right person comes along, or the right situation presents itself.
“I’d wanted to be a doctor, and I even passed enough A levels, but an incident early on led to my being dropped from the course, so I worked in a variety of office jobs instead.
I watched people coming and going, wondering about their private lives, and their private loves.
“I didn’t start writing until a year or so ago, when I was chatting online to some friends who write erotica. I suggested a few themes, thinking that they could write about them, but they encouraged me to write the stories myself.
I still haven’t worked through them all.
“My limp has been the subject of some speculation, especially as I tell a lot of different stories about it. My favourites are the hunting accident and a war wound, which I have told and retold in various forms, some amusing, some tragic, and some erotic.
Perhaps that’s where my fiction has come from.”
And Rose is always full of surprises -- one day a small volume arrived at my door with the morning mail. Rose had written a book – that book was Post Mortem – a tale of undying love – a tale of love beyond the grave. A single white lily decorated the dark cover. I read the book description on the back;
“Em and Peter aren't going to let cancer get in the way of their love for each other. An erotic story with sex scenes, strong language, and material that some people might find shocking.”
I read Rose’s Post Mortem; I felt as if I were trembling inside. I read it again. Was this pure fiction or had these events taken place? It had the ring of truth about it – yet how, why, when, where? Impossible – surely?
And that first book from Rose sets the pace – Rose has a lot to say – is she questioning our sensibilities? Our notion of the taboo – our belief system, the glue that holds us in check – that stops us from delving into acts that sane people find atrocious?
The stories came – each one, challenging -- confronting the forbidden. Rose weaves tales that take us to perverse realms, we shudder, but something in the dark recesses of our minds gently reminds us that we are enjoying ourselves in spite of the exposition of the taboo. There’s incest in Butcher and Baker; gentle bestiality in Ginger. I had one of Rose’s provocative stories on my blog for a while until Blogger decided to clean up the playroom. Apparently, it’s for our own good – apparently Blogger knows right from wrong. He/she/it/they didn’t actually tell me to withdraw Rose’s story – but with Blogger’s new guidelines hovering like a chilly dark, damp cloud – that particular story can no longer be available for you to read.
But Rose continued to provoke and it’s all too much for Amazon’s sensibilities. She escaped to the relative sanity of Smashwords -- like Blogger, Amazon also believes it/she/he/they know right from wrong and have set up a form of censorship that can only be described as hypocritical bullshit – just weave a little sophistry into your book description and you can get away with pretty well anything – whatever, in other words Rose’s confrontational stories were no longer welcome at Amazon.
Rose has calmed down a little these days – maybe she’s said most of what she wanted to say, I don’t know, but she can now be found on Amazon again. Milk is a playful look at erotic lactation fetish – The Lady House is a creepily erotic ghost story. Noctula checks the box for those sexy undead – vampires.
Treat yourself to a Rose W story – the links are below.
Free reads on Rose’s blog.
The New Leda
Butcher and Baker
Friday, 27 March 2015
So what’s all this stuff about Rebellious Slave – that damn book that I tweet incessantly about?
It’s a Female Domination story – it’s a love story – it’s a story with kinks. I try to show just how far a submissive man will go to please the woman that is his Mistress – in Reuben’s case, his wife.
I hadn’t realised when I created the Female Dominated organisation that is the Coterie how far I was tapping into the psyche of so many men. Men from all walks of life whose dark fantasies and dreams lure them to a world controlled by women – those Mistresses who dominate their male submissives absolutely. The males are there to obey their Mistress’ every whim – they are willing slaves. Free intelligent men who sign over their bodies and minds to The Coterie.
They are sexual slaves, always at the bidding of their Mistress – whether it be a nightly demand for cunnilingus or a whipping at the end of a long exhausting day. The males are humiliated – ordered to perform depraved acts, even if the perversion is not something that he has yearned for, the fact that he embraces his Mistress’ desires speaks of true love and devotion.
Yes…love. I was recently accused of writing books that celebrate cruelty…the dirt and disgust of perverse sexual preference and experience. My characters love deeply…in Enslaving Eli – Eli adores Jasmine. In Rebellious Slave – Reuben adored his Dominating wife Esme and his Mistress, Melissa.
A reviewer on Amazon doesn’t “get” the acts of depravity in Rebellious Slave. Am I pushing my luck by drawing your attention to a negative review? My readers are discerning and intellectually savvy enough to make up their own minds. You can read the exchange of points of view here.
There is room for depravity within the framework of love; within the framework of erotica. I am talking about abject male submission.
Such a male is Reuben; also Eli, in Enslaving Eli.
But more about The Coterie. An ancient organisation dedicated to the Feminine principle. They are followers of the cult of the goddess Artemis -- the Coterie is wealthy; secretive. It has been in existence for centuries – it has the support of our leaders’ world wide – royalty too. But no one knows about it – there maybe hushed whispers, rumours even. The Coterie is there, but it isn’t. From their wealthy, ancient houses in England and across the world the Coterie Mistresses rule their men absolutely. And their men submit willingly, lovingly.
Here’s an extract about the origins of the Coterie – taken from my novella Enslaving Eli.
“They were shaded from the hot sun by two Ginkgo trees; the oldest species of tree, older even than the Coterie itself. No one knew when the two trees had been planted. Jasmine had read somewhere that there was a Ginkgo tree in China, estimated to be 3,500 years old. Fossils of Ginkgo leaves had been found dating back millions of years both in Europe and the Middle East. The strangely shaped leaves clattered in a sudden cooling breeze. Jasmine was glad of the shade and the breeze. She liked the warm weather, but despite her dark hair she did not tan well. She preferred to keep her complexion ivory white.
Jasmine inhaled the breeze. She was thankful that she could come to this place, steeped in history. A place ruled by women, time out of mind. It had always been thought that the Coterie legend began with Queen Elizabeth the First. But only twenty years ago, a Roman shrine had been found, right here, where she now sat in the little courtyard; it was dedicated to the Goddess Diana. It had been unearthed tenderly, by a female archaeologist, sponsored by the British Museum. Though the woman had preferred to remain anonymous, her book, “The Lost Pagan Shrines of England,” had been hailed as a masterpiece of scholarly integrity.
The scholar now resided at the Coterie, her anonymity diligently protected by the owners.
Jasmine and Mistress Claudia stood and walked over to the little shrine. The naked slave followed respectfully. The shrine looked just like a hollowed out rock concave; part of an ancient stone wall. But it had been authenticated by historians around the globe. A verified shrine to the Goddess.
Both women genuflected before the ugly little statue of Diana. It was grotesque, and worn with time, but still recognisable as a statue of a woman. A woman with many huge breasts. Fertile, yet virgin.
They were in a sacred place, and both women recognised it as a place worthy of devotion. Diana, the huntress and before that, the Greek Goddess, Artemis, and before that, far winged Selene, Goddess of the moon. The virgin Goddess. The shrine was dedicated to the feminine principal.”
In Enslaving Eli there is a scene where Eli is branded – there is no suggestion of him being forced – he goes willingly to the white hot fire. He bears the ritual with pride; with dignity. His Mistress has deemed it appropriate – that is enough for him. He recalls the pain and the stinking sizzle of burning flesh. He dedicates them to his Mistress and the Goddess.
Here is the branding extract from Enslaving Eli;
“When the Goddess reached him, she smiled at him. His breathing quickened. He broke out in perspiration. His heart rattled against his ribs. His mouth was bone dry.
Artemis placed her bow and quiver on the ground.
Her hands touched his shoulders, as if approving the sacrifice that Mistresses and Priestess had chosen for her.
She was tall, but she still barely reached his shoulder. She reached up and tangled long, strong fingers in his hair, pulling him towards her, kissing him, pushing her cool tongue into his mouth. Eli kissed her back, she tasted of aniseed and citrus. She smelled of wild flowers, poppy and wood anemone. She was warm in his arms.
Her fingers wrapped around his erection and she pumped gently. The smooth sensation was exquisite.
She turned him as they kissed, so that he had his back to the semicircle of women. She stood behind him, her hand on the back of his neck.
It was a silent command to kneel. Eli knelt.
She walked around him towards the altar. He caught a glimpse of her sandaled feet. He heard her remove the brand from the fire. One of the coals spilled over and rolled perilously near to his face. He heard her dip the brand in a pail of cold water. He heard the violent hiss of steam. He closed his eyes. He heard her soft footsteps as she walked behind him. He was aware that at least three of the Mistresses stood around his head. One straddled him, sitting on his shoulders. She was a heavy weight and he had no choice, but to lower his upper body to the ground, and raise his butt. The other two Mistresses used the hooks on the shackles to fix him at the wrists to the two iron rings.
The ululations and hissing began again. Eli could scent the excitement in the air. He could taste his own fear; it tasted like metal. His erection pained him, his cock slapped against his belly.
And then she did it. No hesitation. She placed her free hand onto his lower back to steady herself, then the red hot metal sank into the flesh of his right buttock. His piteous scream echoed around the Shrine, through the centuries and she didn’t let up. She was strong and she held it firmly in place. His screams and bellows shouted his fury and would have been heard for miles. Tears streamed over his cheeks, snot drooled from his nose. His mouth was open in a perpetual scream of negation and saliva dribbled over his lips. He bucked the fat Mistress from his shoulders, his strength was inhuman, like a raging, tortured animal. Every muscle in his body clenched, He retched as the brand cooked his flesh. Every bone in his body ached and the pain roiled through him.
He had been well conditioned to associate pain with pleasure and his body and mind did precisely what they had been trained to do. He ejaculated, his orgasm pumping his seed over the floor of the Shrine.
The rush of the orgasm was exquisite and still the brand cooked his flesh. He could hear the sizzle as the fat burnt, and he could smell the stench of cooked human flesh.
At last the Goddess lifted the branding iron. It had been a bloody mutilation, a violation; a massacre.”
The women of the Coterie are all powerful – submissive males fear them, long for them.
So what happens when…if a slave dares to transgress? That is Reuben’s story; the story that is Rebellious Slave…
And finally here's a great review from "S.O." at Amazon.
Billierosie might just be one of my new favorite authors. I picked up this novella since it's erotica that doesn't have a woman as a submissive. It's ironic that in this day and age - 2014 - 21st century - that women are STILL being pushed into submission, so when I read that this had male slaves, it intrigued me. Although it's limited in it the sex it has, it's very well written. I don’t know how ’50 SoG became so popular with the garbage that it is. Some people need to learn that numerous sex acts isn't as good or important as the QUALITY of the sex acts, and that throwing around certain words or phrases don't necessarily make for a good read (unless you're a bored and horny housewife then anything will turn you on...and that's sad). Moving on...
In the world of the Coterie women are Dominants, and they have submissives of both genders. Men aren't "alphas", ego-maniacal, trying to push women down, or any of that crap. They serve their Mistresses, and do so willingly and happily (where do I sign up for this?!?!).
All except Reuben who had one moment of weakness with a female slave whose name he didn't even know. As punishment, Reuben is chained, naked, in a cage with only water and a chamber pot.
His Mistress and her friend, the head of the Coterie, have a discussion of what to do with him and come to the conclusion to sell him, though deep inside he longs for his Mistress's return.
What I like about this (other than the aforementioned) is that there is true devotion to the women. It's not ownership of her soul, it's giving over his. Billierosie is articulate, descriptive, and not shy about words and phrases that Americans are. It's such a shame that we claim to be such a liberal nation, yet it's UK writers that are so female friendly and well spoken.
Also, kudos to not having some idiot with 6-pack abs on the cover just to sell a book. The art on Billierosie's cover is a direct reflection of the art in her words on the page...
There were some things mentioned that weren't necessarily a turn on, but just the fact that they were mentioned at all was what I enjoyed.
The only thing I didn't like was that it was too short! I would have loved for this to have been a full length novel instead of a novella. However, I will definitely be reading more from this author!
Rebellious Slave is at Amazon US priced at $1.48 as a Kindle eread and in paperback at $3.59 click here
Rebellious Slave is also at Amazon UK priced at 99p as a Kindle eread and £2.75 in paperback, click here
Enslaving Eli is available as an eread at Amazon US at $5.99 click here
Enslaving Eli at Amazon UK at £3.68 click here
Enslaving Eli is also at Sizzler Editions click here
Enslaving Eli will be out in paperback later this year.
Friday, 20 March 2015
Jean-Louis André Théodore Géricault (26 September 1791 – 26 January 1824) was a profoundly influential French artist, painter and lithographer, known for The Raft of the Medusa and other paintings. Although he died young, he became one of the pioneers of the Romantic movement.
Born in Rouen, France, Géricault was educated in the tradition of English sporting art by Carle Vernet and classical figure composition by Pierre-Narcisse Guérin, a rigorous classicist who disapproved of his student's impulsive temperament, but recognized his talent. Géricault soon left the classroom, choosing to study at the Louvre instead, where he copied from paintings by Peter Paul Rubens, Titian, Diego Velázquez, and Rembrandt for about six years, from 1810 to 1815. There he found a vitality which he preferred to the prevailing school of Neoclassicism. Much of his time was spent in Versailles, where he found the stables of the palace open to him, and where he gained his knowledge of the anatomy and action of horses. WIKI
Géricault was beautiful, controversial, supremely talented. He had an affair with his aunt. The pair had shared an intense bond since Géricault's boyhood, but by his twenties he had matured into an eye-catching figure.
His teacher Carle Vernet claimed he 'had never seen such a good-looking man ... his legs were, above all, superb': Alexandrine-Modeste clearly thought so too and aunt and nephew started an affair. In 1816 Géricault fled to Rome in an attempt to distance himself from the imbroglio but he was back within a year and in 1818 Alexandrine-Modeste gave birth to his son. It was, therefore, in a state of turmoil that he started work on The Raft of the Medusa.
“Théodore Géricault was the quintessential Romantic artist: he died young and in torment, leaving behind him one great masterpiece and the legend of a painter touched by both genius and madness. 'Suffering is real and pleasures are nothing but imaginary,' he said; it was an extraordinarily bleak outlook and what is truly terrifying is that he believed it.
The painting that made his reputation was exhibited in the Paris Salon of 1819 as “The Scene of a Shipwreck”, but is universally known as “The Raft of the Medusa”. It tells the macabre story of one of the most notorious scandals of Restoration France: the abandonment on a jerry-built raft of 147 passengers and crew of the frigate Medusa when it came to grief off the coast of Senegal in 1816.
As the Royalist captain, officers and more well-to-do passengers headed for the shore in the ship's boats they cut the rope towing the raft, leaving those clinging to its planking to their fate. Provisioned with six barrels of wine, two of water and a sack of soggy biscuit, the castaways' ordeal lasted for 13 days, during which time they suffered from exposure, malnutrition, dehydration, mutiny, murder and, most thrillingly for the audience back in France, cannibalism.
When the raft was finally sighted there were only 15 skeletal survivors left and strips of flesh - human biltong - were hanging on the mast to dry. When the full story of the abandonment of the raft came to be known in France it became a liberal cause célèbre, the perfect example of the callousness of Royalist misgovernment.
Until the second decade of the 19th century, action painting in France—whether dealing with mythic, religious or historical events, and even if violent in content—often lacked real energy. In France, the gorgeous colours and symmetries of Poussin in the 17th century, the chiselled nobility of David in the late 18th and the austere beauty of Ingres at the start of the 19th, all gave way to the explosion of Romanticism. One painting, above all, might be said to have initiated the new movement: Théodore Géricault's ‘The Raft of the Medusa.’”
From the daily telegraph 1 April 2007
Géricault revolutionized the depiction of real events, taking for his subject a scandal only a few years old and "romanticizing" it. While the painter visited hospitals and morgues to study the moribund and cadavers, the figures on the raft here hardly look as though they have just suffered through dehydration, starvation, cannibalism and madness. They are muscular. Some are beautiful.
Today's viewer will probably respond less to this picture's political and historical relevance than to the drama of its composition. In terms of art history, it looks both backward and forward.
“"The Raft of the Medusa," while maintaining the symmetry of Poussin, changes painting once and for all. It is sculptural and architectural, but depicts no architecture. Two great overlapping triangles, suggesting both a ship's sails and the ocean's waves, define the space. They also contain 19 human figures (one barely visible, four others quite obscure) in various postures, combinations and stages of life: the living, the dying and the dead, old and young, black and white, male and—perhaps—female. Some have faces; others turn away from us. We can read the painting both from left to right and from bottom to top.
The picture represents a specific moment. The survivors have just sighted the Argus, the boat that will eventually rescue them but is now a speck on the horizon, actually passing them by. At the top, two men, one an African crew member, are waving banners, shirts or kerchiefs. The figures express a range of emotions, from eagerness and exultation to incredulity, despair, hysteria, resignation and apathy. Géricault's preliminary sketches (one smaller canvas hangs elsewhere in the museum) document the growth of his ambitions for the painting. The most shocking figure, absent from the earlier sketch, is a dead person on the lower right. Its gender is uncertain: Géricault used a male friend as his model, but the chest looks womanly. The head is outside the frame. We see primarily the person's midsection, with pubic hair exposed. Whoever this is, or was, has one leg still wrapped around a beam of the raft. Clearly the person will soon slip into the sea.
Another apparently dead youth has the beauty of a Greek sculpture. The most arresting figure, the only one staring straight out at the viewer, is an older, well-muscled man who supports the youth, perhaps his dead son. He looks like someone out of Michelangelo. His gaze suggests his transcendence of both hope and despair.
The painting's center has what seem to be cracklings or bubbles, which distort both the figures and their colour. The painter's use of bitumen on his palette came at a cost: This particular black appeared lustrous at first, but over time it created a wrinkling that cannot, according to the experts, be corrected.
If not as great a colourist as Delacroix, Géricault made an appropriate palette of deathliness. The picture's primary hues are sickly, pallid grey and yellow flesh tones, but there is a range of hues from alabaster to black. The colouring seems to work against the classic muscularity of the figures' bodies.
But there is more. Nature frames humanity. At the painting's bottom, top and sides, the waves and sky—in their colour and brush strokes both intense and delicate—compete with the humans for our attention. The planks of the raft, especially when viewed from up close, reveal delicate brushwork applied meticulously to reproduce the grain and colour of the wood. Flickers of light on the beams leaven the thick brown impasto.
First and last, there's action itself. Not just the waving gestures of the men at the top, but also the play of sea and light. The wind is blowing from right to left, against the tilt of the human action. The light shines from left to right. The two forces operate in perfect antithetical harmony. Géricault learned from Caravaggio all about chiaroscuro, and then went on to discover by himself a way of depicting human life and death in a painting that contains both natural tempestuousness and compositional calm. He has put pictorial symmetry at the service of ferocity. Two dimensions have never felt less flat.
Gericault’s preparations for the painting were meticulous: he befriended Alexandre Corréard, the Medusa's engineer who had survived the ordeal of the raft and who, with the ship's surgeon, Henri Savigny, had written a celebrated account of the shipwreck; he commissioned the ship's carpenter to build a scale model of the raft; and, most notoriously, in order to immerse himself in death he filled his studio with the heads and limbs of executed criminals borrowed from a nearby hospital. The paintings he made from these body parts are the most horrific still lifes in art, but also among the most beautiful.
The Raft of the Medusa itself is an enormous work, measuring more than 23 feet by 16: 7 meters by almost 5. To paint such a subject at such a size for the official Salon can be seen as a sign of political protest but it can also signal an artist who has lost all sense of what is appropriate.
The other pictures he was producing at this period - scenes of graphic sex and murder - also reveal a severely disturbed man. Within a couple of years he was painting portraits of inmates of a mental asylum, possibly as a fellow patient. Géricault was no clear-headed agitator but a man whose grip on reality was loosening.
Today, “The Raft of the Medusa” hangs, with other large canvases of that period, in one of the Louvre's grand galleries. It has darkened with time. Some of its figures are barely visible, and many details are occluded.”
From Willard Spiegelman’s essay; “Revolutionary Romanticism.”
Sadly, I haven’t seen Géricault’s painting.
Friday, 13 March 2015
This is in response to a very disappointingly unnuanced article published in the Atlantic Monthly.
So, you’ve just seen Fifty Shades of Grey, or you read the book, or both and you’re thinking… wow, that’s looks sexy. I could go for some of that….
Okay, I really hope you read this fully and take what I’ve written here to heart and give it some deep consideration.
1. Fifty Shades of Grey is fiction, written for the purposes of selling books. It was written by a woman who is NOT a practitioner of BDSM and knows literally fuck all about it. It’s an amusing read, a sexy film, whatever. It has no data in it that is reliable for you to apply to real life. Watching Top Gun can’t teach you how to fly a plane and FSOG contains NO practical info on BDSM. Similarly, the stories you will find on this site are fictional. They are not self-help guides, or how to manuals. In fact, quite the opposite. Narrative form leans towards conflict, not harmony. My characters are not admirable, healthy people. They might be interesting fictional characters, but they’re all terrible role models.
It turned you on? Wonderful. Have a wank. Have five. But there is very little chance, statistically that you are a masochist or a sadist, or even all that wired to sexually enjoy the kind of explicit power dynamics involved in domination or submission. So, right off the top, enjoy the fantasy. You don’t have to take it into your real life to be cool or legitimate or trendy.
2. Being sexually aroused or getting erotic pleasure from inflicting pain or receiving it is not normative. I’m not saying it’s wrong, I’m just saying it’s less common than the hype would have you believe. There is a consumer trend at play at the moment to convince you that being that way is a glamorous and desirable thing. Manufacturers of Fifty Shades of Grey and BDSM merch and paraphernalia have in interest in trying to convince you that if you don’t have this stuff, you’re not hip, you’re not sexually aware, or liberated. This isn’t true. They just want to sell stuff and they don’t give a shit who they hurt or what kind of physical, mental or emotional trauma results from their lifestyle identification brand strategy. Bondage, beating and rough sex all carry significant physical and emotional risks. Anyone who tells you it’s absolutely safe is lying.
3. Many people who DO really find the giving or receiving of pain, humiliation, degradation, sexual control, etc., pleasurable have an agenda. They want the rest of the world to think they’re not sick or deviant or evil. There’s nothing wrong with this, because the vast majority of people who practice BDSM are ethical people who feel very strongly about consent and the rules that surround the practice of BDSM. BUT they have an agenda too. They don’t want to be persecuted or punished for their sexual tastes. They want to be validated and recognized as good citizens by mainstream society. This means that some organizations are guilty of downplaying the risks inherent in the practice and downplaying the fact that some people use the cover of BDSM to sexually abuse unwilling, non-consenting people.
4. Being someone who gets their sexual pleasure from causing another pain is problematic within a culture that condemns acts of violence. Generally, it takes a person who is wired this way many years to come to terms with their appetites and figure out how to engage in their type of preferred erotic activity while still staying within the bounds of the law and of humane ethical behavior. And some sadists NEVER manage it. So, cosying up to one carries risk. Always. I’m not engaging in victim blaming. When someone breaks your rules, breaches the boundaries you have set, they are ALWAYS the ones at fault. BUT, violence, especially associated with sex is a taboo in our society. People who get off on it are transgressive by nature. Transgression is about rule breaking. So, you are dealing with a person who is sexually aroused by breaking rules and you are depending on the fact that they will break the ones you like broken, but not the ones you don’t. YOU have an obligation of self-care. You have an obligation to understand that you are placing yourself at greater risk. If the world were fair, all sadists would be scrupulously ethical. But the world is not fair. When it gets fair, I’ll let you know.
5. Being someone who is sexually aroused or gets erotic pleasure from being hurt, humiliated, degraded, restrained, having one’s ego decimated, engaging in symbolic self-annihilation, etc. is also problematic in our culture. Our culture emphasizes the need to avoid pain, to care for oneself, to keep healthy, to hold oneself in high regard. A masochist also faces a difficult path in negotiating his or her way through mainstream society. Their need to get the kind of stimulation that satisfies them often leads them to take risks that others would not take. Just because a person gets sexual satisfaction from being caned doesn’t mean they are asking for or deserve to have their spine broken. But to not acknowledge that in letting someone cane them, they are taking a chance that this might happen is to be willfully stupid. Furthermore, servicing a masochist also requires having limits yourself. And although most masochists are ethical will accept what those limits are, some will not be able to do that. And that can make them very dangerous.
6. Shaming, bullying or manipulating someone into being submissive or taking pain when that isn’t what gets them off is FUNDAMENTALLY lMMORAL. No matter how cool the movies, books, the press or sex toy sales companies say it is. It is a deeply emotional and traumatic experience for anyone whose psychosexuality doesn’t lend itself to this kind of thing.
7. Shaming, bullying or manipulating someone into being dominant or inflicting physical or mental pain is JUST AS IMMORAL. And I suspect there are even more adults being cajoled into this kind of behaviour than anyone wants to admit. Acting in the capacity of a dominant or a sadist can be deeply traumatic to a person who is not naturally inclined to this.
8. Sex is not safe. It’s not safe in nature and it’s not safe in human society. People are vulnerable in sexual situations, both physically and emotionally. Society can inscribe laws that attempt to mitigate the risk and prosecute people who violate them. You can take sensible precautions, and minimize the risks on a personal level, but you can never eliminate them completely. If the world were fair, it would be different, but the world isn’t fair.
9. BDSM is FAR LESS SAFE. If sex carries some basic risk, kinky sex carries a much greater level of risk. It is transgressive sex. To transgress means to consciously and intentionally step over boundaries, to contravene taboos established within any given society. The eroticism at the core of BDSM lies exactly in the fact that kinky activities flaunt established social conventions and carry a level of risk. If it were safe, and socially acceptable, it would not be so erotic.
So… this is the paradox that few people want to accept. We live in a world that encourages us to have our cake and eat it too. But cakes and BDSM are both always subject to the laws of matter and physics. This can be very hard to accept because our consumer society keeps on assuring us that we can have BOTH transgressive pleasure AND perfect safety. It is a lie perpetuated for the purpose of encouraging your consumption.
But you can be thoughtful and self-reflective and refuse the Koolaid. Please, in this instance, stop thinking about what might be cool to have, or be or do. What do you need? What do you really need sexually, erotically, inside? Please ask yourself that.
I do not want to dissuade anyone from pursuing their kinks. I am not condemning, pathologizing or shaming anyone who has non-mainstream sexual tastes. I am not a hypocrite. I just want to try to inform you that you have a duty of care to yourself that goes far beyond this month’s hip thing, or this week’s sexual flavour. Ultimately, I want you alive, uninjured and untraumatized. And it is foolish to ever depend on anyone else to ensure you remain that way. If the world were fair, you could depend on others, organizations, websites, groups to help keep you that way, but the world is not fair.
I have mixed feelings about the debate regarding Fetlife and outing dangerous people. Even if Fetlife were to allow users to publicly accuse people of rape or lesser unacceptable behaviour, it would be a grave mistake to believe you were any safer. Meanwhile, its proponents seem unwilling to address the rare but grave issue of false allegations. A lot of rapes happen when people meet in a bar under very vanilla auspices. Do we post notes naming rapists in bars? I still think the best response to a rape is to formally accuse that person and make the law work. If what is at issue here is that the law, the police and prosecutions are not dealing with this, then that’s the battle we should be fighting – for everyone, kinky or otherwise.
You need to acknowledge that when you step into the world of transgressive sexual practice, you have walked into a less safe place. It doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be there, but it means that you need to be very vigilant and take responsibility for your safety.
You need to practice the care of self. Be well. Be careful.
Thanks to Madeleine Morris (aka Remittance Girl)for letting me post this brilliant essay..read more of Madeleine's stuff here