Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Longest Night

Happy Solstice!

Several people have heaved a collective sigh of relief at the idea of the earth's turn toward longer hours of daylight. I'm not one of them.

I love the dark. I like the grainy texture of the shadows, the richness of the colors. I like the excuse to watch candles flicker, stubbornly proclaiming their true selves against that which would try to encompass them.

I'm not a hibernator. I don't lurk under the covers and merely wait for the return of the light. I skulk in the dark, I explore. That's what the dark is for - exploring. It's for getting in touch with every sense we possess except sight. It's about tactile awareness. The dark is all about scents, sounds, and touching. It's about instinct.

I love the dark. I celebrate it.

A discussion I had with friends reminded me of a poem I wrote about 15 years ago. I wrote it while in the bathtub, with only a candle for light. At first glance, it appears to be all about sex. What I discovered when re-reading it about a year after I wrote it, is that it actually has very little to do with sex. It's about power... the power of finding my way in the dark.


I don’t care
about the women
you’ve taken to your bed –
don’t care to know
if they were
blond, brunette, or redhead,
if this one
came on like a whore,
and that one a shy little girl,
if their skin
felt like dandelion fluff
or leather,
used whips
or whipped cream,
left you limp,
gobbled you whole,
screamed your name,
or prayed for mercy.
Don’t want to be
compared to,
or an amalgamation of
all the names you’ve
slept with.
Won’t be your
first girlfriend,
or mother.
What I do want –
to throw you down,
go down,
take you down,
turn you inside out,
make you forget.
I don’t dare say,
want to be god to you,
hold you to my breast
until you lose
what makes you a man,
helpless in my arms,
content to be breathing.
Want to unleash
every screaming rage,
bottomless sorrow,
overwhelming joy,
and take the same from you –
walk all over you `til you beg my name,
treat you with such tenderness
you weep my name,
touch every aching part of you –
make you laugh, make you cry,
make you know.

What I want most?
(and this stops me cold)
I want you
to need all of it
from me.

© Barbara Ann Black, 2010-2011


  1. Gawd, I LOVE the way you write.

  2. And you can say this is not about sex/intimacy...I want to make a comment about it in that perspective: To want someone in this way requires a willingness to open yourself up to that place, that vulnerability and to submit to not retaining power/protection/control/autonomy...if only for that span of time when intimate. I wonder if my heart or my mind will ever agree to be so free, abandoning their helmets and padded elbows to risk such encompassing connectivity to another soul.

  3. Thanks, Jo. I sure miss your blurbs!

    Lisa, wow... well said. I only said that sex had *little* to do with it. Sex was the mechanism for a... hmm... emotional, mental state that I needed to reach.

    Such a thing is a process. I'm still reaching... but I am, in fact, reaching.


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