Poetry, according to Coleridge, is the best words in the best order. By extension, this might suggest that ‘erotic poetry’ is the best erotic words in their sauciest order.
It’s disconcerting to accept that poetry is only words. When we consider the effect and the impact that well-written poetry can have on our lives, the knowledge that it is only produced through using words—the same tools that we use for blogs, shopping lists and the fuck-you-notes that we pin to the refrigerator—can be a revelation this is shocking and eerie.
Or maybe I’m overstating the situation. I’m a huge lover of poetry. Being honest, I’ve been described as a huge lover in several contexts that don’t include poetry, but I’m running the danger of digressing if I follow that particular line of thought. What I’m trying to say is that poetry, when it’s done right, is a medium that has an impact far beyond the force that we should expect from mere words on paper.
Libidacoria – in a plain brown wrapper, is the first in a proposed series of four titles from the author K~~. This first title explores the persona’s adventures with sex in a frank and uncompromising style that is perfectly suited to the honest medium of poetry. The author’s style is direct and accessible. The story being told is unique and, at the same time, heartbreakingly familiar.
Last night, you alluded to the “L” word-
An 18-year-old schoolboy mentality.
Because we fuck,
Does not mean we love.
Although I find things about you I love-
That rush comes before we cum,
That glint in your eye spying our next victim,
Your never-relenting, all-consuming want of me…
But I will never love you.
So take our fun and move on.
Remember me often
And think of me more.
I wish I could be your everything,
But I am just a whore.
At first glance Libidacoria is an examination of lust. The title, a neologistic blend of libido and acoria (the medical suffix indicating a voracious appetite) lends itself to this interpretation. K~~’s persona is driven by an insatiable sexual greed. The pleasure of experiencing this through K~~’s poetry is the joy that one experiences wallowing in an orgy of undiluted lust.
Except that there’s more than that happening within these pages. Female promiscuity remains a social taboo—even if it is a receding one. K~~’s persona, driven by her personified libido, constantly speaks to us in a language that echoes societal disapproval despite her enthusiastic embrace of a hedonistic lifestyle. It’s accepted that female sexuality is a complex issue. But a reading and a re-reading of Libidacoria serves as a reminder that the complexities can often be internalised.
I’m in danger of going to deep into the psychological elements of literary theory—which would make this review dull and uninteresting. It’s enough to say here that Libidacoria is intelligent poetry about female sexuality and demands an intelligent reader response.
One of the things we need to remember about poetry is that the experience of reading each poem is different for every reader. If you enjoy contemporary poetry that deals honestly with erotica then you’ll adore Libidacoria.
© 2009 Ashley Lister. All rights reserved.