Ooh yeah — throwing up

In just a few more days, the strangest event known to man is going to occur. Right — my 40th high school reunion. I am not going. I didn’t attend the 10th, 20th, or 30th;  will never, ever attend anything to do with that high school unless, maybe, it’s to celebrate the darn building getting burned down.

I have a couple of male friends who really, really want me to attend this time, guys who’ve been friends with me since I was 12; guys who know my history, who know the awfulness. Guys who can still make me smile, make me laugh, make me feel safe. “We’ll be with you, Marilyn. It’ll be okay. We’ll be together.”  As if the past is past; it’s done, gone.

But nothing having to do with me and high school is okay, even though I was really smart, graduated at the top of my class and was  the Valedictorian on Graduation Day.

It was only because I was so smart that I was able to skip a ton of school without ever getting caught and do no homework whatsoever, drink like a fish, take a ton of drugs, and still get A’s. Then, after a few years of performing this death-defying feat, the high school principal himself called me at home and pretty much demanded, in a very friendly way, that I was writing a speech and delivering it at the graduation ceremony. (It was a huge school, too. There were over 800 kids in my class alone. The fact that the principal knew me at all, had called me at home on my private unlisted phone number, kinda freaked me out. I thought that I’d better write that speech or I was going to be in some kind of serious trouble.)

For me, the problems with high school started back when I was 11 years old and fell incredibly in love with a boy who was nearly 2 years older than me. I’ll call him Greg because that was his name. Greg was tall, thin, fair-complected with long blonde wavy hair and very blue eyes. He was very smart, too, but he was also very bad. And bad boys, by early 1970s standards, were actually pretty darn bad. But I seriously crushed on him. He didn’t know I was alive until I was 12.

When he did discover I was alive it was only because I was a girl who had fallen into his field of vision and he was horny.  He (seriously) got more sex than any guy I ever knew for years afterward, and he was so freakin’ young at the time.

But when I was 12, even though I was sort of the masturbation queen, I didn’t know what masturbation was — that this thing I did to myself had a label, or that anyone else on earth did it too. I had already been taught about “where babies came from” but I hadn’t understood it at all and had no idea that making babies had anything to do with sex, or what sex even was, so me and masturbation were just on this whole other unidentifiable secret planet, isolated from the whole world.

Well, the day Greg discovered I was alive — that was a big day for me, because a lot of key things started to come together in my head. I look back on it now and I cannot believe how young he was. But he was already very into the seduction; talking low in my ear, saying things that make it seem like we are the only 2 people alive.  You’re like a deer in the headlights and meanwhile he’s pulling your tee shirt up, unhooking your bra, pulling your pants halfway down. I was completely transfixed — plus I was just so  in love with him. It was  more than I could handle, really, because it was actually too exciting. I never knew that any guy at all, let alone a guy I had such a crush on, would ever touch me in that secret way that I would touch myself.  I couldn’t figure out how he even knew how to do that.

But then we had to deal with the very real presence of the first erection I’d ever seen in my life and the little party was over. I was way too freaked out by it. I didn’t know that erections happened. And so he realized I was way too young for him, and I went right out of his field of vision again, and back he went to the older girls.

I didn’t care that he fooled around with the older girls; I just really, really wanted to be among the girls he fooled around with. A few days later, I was hanging out where he was playing racquetball, and he at least noticed I was alive, but only to smack my ass with that horrible wooden paddle they played with. It hurt like hell because I was only wearing my bathing suit.  He gave me a look that was almost a smile but not quite, but it clearly said, get out of here, you’re too young.

My best friend’s older sister was the cutest, sexiest, sweetest girl on earth and she was really bad. She had tits already and hips and the prettiest smile. She laughed a lot and smoked Salems and flattered everyone, and everyone loved her. And she was just plain bad. Her dad loved her a lot and we all knew it. It was common knowledge that she was always getting his belt because she was so bad, but the next day, here came that cute smile again, and her sweet laugh and she went right back to being bad.

She was who I went to to try to understand what Greg had been doing to me, what he had wanted, what had happened. In the sweetest possible way, she explained everything. Even the stuff that kind of freaked me out — like, where that erection was eventually going. She laughed that sweet laugh and said, “Don’t worry, you’ll get wet down there and  you won’t even mind it because you’ll be having so much fun.”

Well, nothing else in my life was remotely like hers so I was kind of sketchy about all that fun I’d be having with that erection, but still, she did change my world. She changed what I understood about it. And come autumn, when I was 13, Greg and I were finally in the same school building and he noticed me again and we fooled around a little bit but I could still tell that he could take me or leave me. So I went to the local bookstore and I bought the Joy of Sex. A book that only people who were around in the 1970s can appreciate the full magnitude of. An illustrated book that not only described in explicit detail every single sexual act imaginable, but had pictures to go along with it so, finally, you could not get lost.

I found a much older guy, a hash-smoking, anti-Nixon musician, who thought I was a lot older than I was (even though I didn’t say one way or the other how old I was, still, I was tall and had tits by then and pubic hair, so he literally did not know). And I point-blank asked him to have sex with me and to show me how to do all these things that I’d read about. It took a little bit of persuading but he eventually went along with it. He taught me how to do everything. He was really patient, fun, nice, and almost died when he found out he had just deflowered a 13-year-old girl and taught her how to have oral sex.

But, needless to say, the next time Greg wanted to make out with me, I was full of surprises. And, over night, I became the only girl he was fooling around with. I did not regret a moment of this, gang, because I loved him. But everyone at school was soon talking about me because he’d told his brother what was going on between us and his brother promptly told the entire world. But Greg was just the most unusual guy. So smart. Soon, it wasn’t just about sex. We could talk about a lot things, and he listened to me, to what I knew about music, or poetry, to what I was figuring out about life. He was almost 16 by then, I was 14.

And then, suddenly, in late August, it was over;  he was killed in a motorcycle accident and my world fell to pieces. I could not handle his death at all, but the worst part was that, once he was dead, all the other boys started sniffing around. God, it was scary. Everyone knew I wasn’t a virgin. Those boys all wanted to have sex simply because I wasn’t a virgin and I was not interested in any of them; I wasn’t even interested in being alive anymore.  But they would follow me home, or call me on the phone, or assault me in the woods that I had to walk through every afternoon to get home from the school grounds.

I’ve always been the kind of girl who, even if I’m scared, will simply speak up for myself. I won’t ever just quietly take whatever anyone wants to dish out to me. So I fought all of them off and basically told all of them what I thought of them. And most of them hated me and called me a whore, but I didn’t give a fuck because I didn’t regret anything that had happened between me and Greg.

And then one Friday evening, at the start of Christmas vacation, 2 older boys from the high school — seniors — got hold of “Marilyn, the 14 year-old girl who was not a virgin,” as I was walking home from a Christmas party and I could not fight them off and they raped the hell out of me. They did not stop until they had taken absolutely everything they wanted from me. Then they were gone. And I was naked, pissing myself, vomiting, crying. No one came to help me. No one was around.

I confided in a couple of my girlfriends about what had happened. In those days, there really was nothing you could do about being raped. Nobody really cared. And it was more an issue of, well, you should have stayed a virgin if you didn’t want guys to treat you like that.  Everyone at school was sort of “aware” that this thing had happened to me, but they talked about it like I had “had sex with 2 older guys from the high school.” Not at all how I thought about it.

I wound up attempting suicide and being put away in a mental institution for many months. When I got out, I was suddenly in high school, even though all my friends had been going there for a while already. I never really recovered from that. Never found my right place,never found my footing.  Certain jerks on the football team, who never even knew Greg, would still call me a whore. But I would just look at them in disgust and say to their faces, “You’re an asshole.”

They didn’t scare me, because by then, I knew what fear was really like. I knew I would recognize it if I ever saw it coming for me again.

So even though so much life has happened in the meantime; everyone has gone on to have their lives, lives that are sometimes rewarding, sometimes harrowing, but always all-consuming, and so who remembers a rape that happened over 40 years ago to some other girl? And who really cares? If they remember me at all, it’s from that speech I gave on Graduation Day where I told all of them not to be afraid of life, to go out and follow their dreams.

But still, there is so much I do remember, even though I try not to go there because I end up feeling like throwing up. I can forgive and have forgiven, but a reunion? Christ. What would we be reuniting for?

 

 

 

 

Lucky Ducksters in our Midst

Just back from a road trip. Went to see my Dad.

People who’ve known me forever know that I’ve had 2 distinctly different fathers: the one who raised me (the one I call ‘Dad’) and the one who was my birth father (the one I called ‘Don’ — the one I wrote Ribbon of Darkness about). Don’s been dead since 1999, so, obviously, the one who raised me is the one I went to visit.

My dad and I have had a really up & down relationship since I was in my mid-teens.  He was either speaking to me or not speaking to me; I was either in the Will or out of the Will; he was speaking to me but only saying mean things to me (i.e., “I wish I’d stayed in San Francisco after the Korean War, never gone back to Ohio and never adopted you“)  so I’d stop speaking to him; I’d relent and go see him and try to make peace with him and he’d answer the door and say, “What did you come here for?” Me, exasperated in a nanosecond: “Dad, I just wanna be nice.”

Stuff like that. For decades.

For the last 5 or 6 years, we’ve had a peace treaty in place. He tries to ignore the stuff I still do that confounds him and I try to not listen to the stuff he still says that frustrates me. But now that I’ve moved even farther away from him, I can’t get down there to see him that often. He’s old now and can’t travel anymore so it’s up to me to go see him. We’ve both just had birthdays, both gotten a year older. So this little road trip was, like, all right; I  gotta do this thing.

I’m in my car, heading east; it was a dark, summer-rainy morning and everything looked so beautiful. I thought to myself, I don’t remember it looking this beautiful last time I drove down there, and then I thought, FUCK! I’m supposed to be going WEST… I was already 45 minutes out of my way.  It took me forever to find a place out there in the middle of nowhere to turn around and head back the right way.

I cranked Tom Petty’s Cabin Down Below on the CD player. Anyone who knows this song knows that it’s got a really dirty groove to it. It’s not just a song about sex, but about dirty sex. So, I mean, really; I cranked it loud. I needed to be 3 hours away in the other direction as quickly as possible. I played the song over & over & over and soared on that dirty groove until it became like hypnotic lust overtaking my entire car. Great music to drive by at 90 MPH.

I do tend to speed when I feel 100% certain that the Sheriff’s not around ( i.e., he’s already in my rearview mirror).  And I pray to St. Christopher to please send me a sign when a Sheriff is lurking up on the horizon. So far, it has always worked, those prayers.

So I was just sailing past everybody on that 2-lane highway in the drizzling summer rain.  And, lost in that dirty song groove, I started thinking about that gorgeous guy at work again (see post re: Wide Open Valley under a Thousand Stars), because now I’m certain he’s purposely doing the mindfuck thing that Tops do when they know a sexual submissive is in their field of vision. I have to have said or done something over the last few weeks that made him figure me out, because  the other night, he did something/said something that got me so freakin’ off that now I know for sure he’s doing the “Top mindfucking the bottom” thing. And I couldn’t have been happier.

But then, sadly, he was gone. Left the building. Went home to the lucky duckster who lives with him and shares his bed.  But I don’t care. I don’t mind getting my mind fucked in that specific way because then I can go home, touch myself,  and wait for the sky to crack completely open.

The next afternoon, I was still in my little gorgeous-guy swoon. I was on my bed with none of my clothes on, imagining how perfect the world would be if, for some unknown reason, he was suddenly no longer with that lucky duckster and was just as suddenly single. And the results were amazing. At least, it felt to me like the sky cracked open.

I got off the bed, washed up. Threw on my shorts, my tee shirt, my flip-flops. I trotted down the stairs, on a mission to get to the Dollar Store to buy cat litter in preparation for my little road trip, when who do I discover on my front porch, knocking politely on my open screen door? Yeah, that’s right,  the Mormon Elders.

I was so embarrassed. I really do love seeing them but, I mean, they are serious about chastity, which includes not masturbating, ever, and I was slightly panicking and wondering, Oh God, was I making a lot of noise up there in my room? My windows are all wide open…So I had to act like nothing was amiss.  But I couldn’t help thinking that even Jesus was finding it funny.

But meanwhile; the road trip. I’m in my car,  being overwhelmed by Cabin Down Below, speeding like a demon and the pictures of the suddenly-single gorgeous guy that begin filling my head are amazing and suddenly, I’m, like, at my dad’s. He comes outside to greet me and I’m standing in the driveway, trying to hide that I’m in a sort of distracted swoon. He says, “Wow, you made great time.”  And I couldn’t really figure out how I had gotten there so quickly. I guess 90 MPH will do that for a girl. Then I tried to behave like a reasonably normal person for the rest of the day. (Luckily, my dad knows full well that I’m not a reasonably normal person so it’s an easy order to fill.)

He only talked about my writing briefly. He knows it’s important to me, that my writing is my life, but to him, my writing is only about, “When are you going to sell anything again? You’re not making any money.” And I’m saying, “It’s not just about money, Dad. To me, it’s more important that I’m choosing the right words.” And this trip, he tried really, really hard to not look at me like I was from Mars when I said that, but then he did say, “Is there anything you want to talk to me about?”

And I’m privately breaking out in a sweat because my first thought is that this has something to do with all this sex I want to have with the unavailable, inappropriate gorgeous guy at work. But this can’t possibly be what he wants to talk about, right? Besides, my dad has read most of my books and some of my stories over the years (when Neptune & Surf finally came out in 1999, my phone rang. It was my dad. “I read your book…” Oh crap. I would have rathered he hadn’t but once you become a famous erotica writer you surrender any and all rights to the thoughts that are in anybody else’s head, even if it’s your dad.)  So I finally realized that even if by some miracle he had found out about the gorgeous guy in my head from work, he couldn’t have cared less and that he was only trying to make conversation with me; he was only trying to find out how my life was going.

I can’t be truly open with my dad. For so much of my teenage and adult life, he was so mean to me. He did eventually apologize for all of it and so I try to work it out in my mind, my heart, to let it go. But I can only let go so far and I just say, “Everything’s great.” And he just sighs.

When I was little, my dad was so nice to me. He really liked me and he looked out for me. He was away a lot during my childhood, but  if he was home and I was in trouble for something (which I usually was), he would try to intervene on my behalf so that I wouldn’t get spanked (this always pissed off my mother because she was on some mission from Satan to constantly spank me). But my dad was so different from her. He made this deal with me. He said, “If you don’t lie to me, I won’t spank you.” So I didn’t lie and he kept his promise, throughout my entire childhood.

I really trusted him and when he was in town and at home, I always felt safe, because my home life could get pretty frightening when he wasn’t there.

In those days, I could tell my dad anything. I really could. And not think twice about it. Once he asked me, “Where did you get all those rings you’re wearing?” I said, “I stole them from a store.” He looked at me, sighed, and said, “You’re going to get yourself in big trouble doing things like that, you know.” (And he was right.  I eventually got arrested and taken to jail, put on house arrest, and told by the Lieutenant who arrested me that if I got arrested again, I was going to reform school. I was terrified of reform school but it didn’t keep me from stealing a car 2 years later with one of my girlfriends — we were both 15, it was 3 AM. The Sheriff who caught us said, “You are in big trouble, girls.” Ah, so this is what my dad meant by getting into big trouble. Nothing quite like a Sheriff, in those intense black uniforms they wear, telling you that you are in big trouble. You suddenly receive the meaning clearly and you are really wishing at that point that you had the option to just get spanked.  Luckily, the man we stole the car from dropped the charges on the spot. He got his car back, which was what he really wanted. After that, I finally stopped stealing.)

When I was 12, things really started changing at home. My dad was having an affair that eventually wound up causing him to leave us for good. My mom was becoming meaner and meaner, and becoming more unhinged, and my dad was, more & more, taking my side against her, even if it was only in private. I don’t know that it was in my best interest, though. It was almost like he didn’t actually care much anymore. Once, my grandmother, unbeknownst to me, had seen me drinking Jack Daniels out of the bottle and smoking cigarettes with one of my girlfriends. She called my dad and told him.

He came up to my room, where I was playing my guitar, minding my own business, and he asked me if it was true, that I was drinking whiskey and smoking cigarettes with Karen.  I said, “How did you find out about that?” He was dumbfounded that it was true. I was 13 years old. He sat down on my bed with me and  said, “Look. I was sent up here to give you the strap, but I don’t want to hit you.  I’m just going to say that I did, but if you drink whisky and smoke cigarettes again, you better be damn sure you don’t get caught because then it will look like I can’t control my own daughter. And then I am going to give you a whipping you are never going to forget. Do you understand what I’m saying?”

I did. He was saying: Drink whisky, smoke cigarettes, do NOT get caught. Shortly after that, he moved out and left us and, emotionally then,  I was on my own. No one had my back.

He’s old now. Practically deaf. His hearing is in that range where he can comfortably hear chain saws and jet engines and not much else. But it didn’t keep me from keeping the volume on my iPhone really, really low, as the phone sat on my pillow, right next to my ear, and  I listened to the Divinyls over and over, my pajama bottoms completely off and the pictures of my gorgeous guy filling my head again as I waited for the sky to once more crack open. I seriously did NOT want to wake my dad and have him walk in on me like that. Not that I really care, but I know he doesn’t need to just keep getting constantly confronted with all my insanity that just never, ever stops.

When I was done, I closed the Divinyls song and thought about the Mormon Elders and how potentially embarrassing that could have been — for all of us. But this is why I won’t repent, because for Latter Day Saints, once you repent and then keep on sinning, that is when it gets serious and you are going to Hell. If you don’t ever repent but keep on sinning, there is this other level you go to that is not as bad as Hell, and is more like being sent to your room for eternity to think about what you’ve done.

My entire life has been about being sent to my room to think about what I’ve done, so I think I’m going to be okay with it. The  only other option is to leave myself alone and I just don’t see it happening, gang, at least not any time soon.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Listen up, you cats & kittens!

UPDATE: There were some formatting errors in The Muse Revisited Volume II: Erotic Novellas & Longer Works, specifically in Necessary to her Good and A Picture in a Frame. If you are having trouble downloading this volume, please try again later today.

 For anyone who already downloaded this title and wants the corrected version, this title will remain free for one more week.

This is it, gang. The final countdown. You have until midnight tonight, Pacific Time, to download any/all of my eBooks that are published on Smashwords — for FREE.

After that, you will have to cough up at least three — and often as much as FOUR — whole dollars to download those same eBooks! (Or, of course, wait until the Winter Sale, where everything becomes free again…) (Its no wonder I never make any money, is it??)

However, that said… I really appreciate that so many of you have taken the time to download my books.  Here, again, are the direct links. And, as always, here is my Extreme Cautionary Warning to those readers who have only known me as an (award-winning!!) script writer:

Freak Parade and The Muse Revisited Volumes 1-3 are exceptionally explicit (award-winning!) literary erotica, often with bisexual BDSM themes and with overtones of what is now termed  “questionable consent”. These titles are not aimed at the average reader and could be considered upsetting or extremely offensive.

However, Twilight of the Immortal is historical fiction, not literary erotica.

If you’d like to know more about any of these titles before downloading, use the drop down menu on the  upper right of this page, under “About Marilyn Jaye Lewis”.

Here are the links to my titles on Smashwords:

Okay, thanks for visiting! See ya!

 

A wide open valley under a thousand stars

I hate to sound like I’m repeating myself, but last night was intense.

Not the same kind of intensity of the intense day that came before it. A whole different kind of intense.

A few nights a week, I work at a really old, expensive historic inn in the Hinterlands. I love working there because, architecturally, it is so lovely, and because it also held very tender memories for Gus Van Sant, Sr, an incredible man with whom I worked for several years when I worked for Gus Van Sant Jr’s movie company.

It is the easiest job I ever had in my life and it pays good, so a few hours a week can help me pay the bills while giving me tons of time to write.

Literally 95% of the people I work with at the inn are younger than me and most of them, a lot younger than me. I love being around their energy, even though I am often really alarmed by how different their lives are, at such an awesome age, than mine was. If they are consumed with sex & art at all, you’d never know it because they always seem to be on their darn phones. For all I know, they’re texting one another and saying really filthy & profound things, but I kind of doubt it.

When I was in my 20s, I lived in New York City and it was the 1980s. just before and then during the explosion of AIDS. Our world was intense. To us, at that age, nothing was more important than art (music, writing, movies, film, painting, poetry, theater) and sex. The only phones we had were at home, attached to the wall, so what we did was interacted very intensely with each other, constantly.  And we were always having some kind of/any kind of sex, whenever we could, even during work.

One  crazy & intense restaurant in Times Square that I was the Manager of when I was all of 22 (!!), even had a tube of Vaseline in the top drawer by the time clock that the gay guys would grab on their way to a “bathroom break.” There were no cigarette breaks back then because you could smoke anywhere… The girls suffered most in that scenario, since we have bladders the size of a mustard seed. If you had to wait a really long time for the bathroom to become available, it usually meant a couple of guys were in their having anal sex.  Bang bang bang on the door. “Come on, you guys! I’ve gotta pee!” Then out they would eventually stroll and get right back to work.

I remember, when I worked at MoMA, disappearing a few times with my girlfriend, Valerie, into a bathroom stall in the bar next to the museum,  and making out really hot & heavy because we were killing time between work shifts and just ridiculously horny.  We would actually have orgasms in a public bathroom, then go back out and join our co-workers who were sitting at the bar; we’d drink straight bourbon and smoke cigarettes, chatter on like fools about every topic under the sun, and wait for our shifts to start again. The General Manager, our boss, a very serious-minded, Le Cordon Bleu-trained Executive Chef from Alsace, France, would sometimes walk by outside the bar and toss a polite wave at us through the huge plate-glass window as he headed back into the museum.  Once, he even had a particular sort of smile on his face so we assumed he’d been with a pretty woman who had an apartment near by. Nobody gave a shit because the work got done and the places made money.

Things are so different now. And not just the phones. For instance, the inn where I work has a policy of Zero Tolerance for sexual harassment — and it is staggering what comes under the banner of sexual harassment.  And any co-worker at all can file a complaint against you and you can be out of job in a nanosecond. It has already happened there twice in the past year.

I keep my private life and my career extremely private from everybody I work with.  It is too scary for me, otherwise. Several months ago, a 17-year-old busboy came into the kitchen and announced to me, “I found your Wikipedia page!” My eyes sprang open and my heart stopped, until he said, “I didn’t know you were ever a singer in New York! That’s so cool.”

Thank god.  Because if you look hard enough at that Wikipedia page, you can discover that, for most of my life, I was a pornographer. And a really well known one, at that. A wonderful career that spiraled down into something frightening when the Government began to get out of control. Not just the FBI popping up and letting me know they had their eye on me, but also the Attorney General of the United States. I went from being a really respected sex writer, editor, producer, web developer and art curator, to also being a book publisher, who was suddenly looking at a 10-year prison term and fines I could never have afforded to pay.  All because I had chosen, of my own free will, to publish wonderfully written filthy books that the Government decided were harmful to children (who hadn’t yet even discovered them) because they were sold by my own publishing company on the Internet.

Trust me, I was willing to close down my business and just walk away, but the ACLU gently, consistently, relentlessly asked me to fight it. My mom flew with me to the Federal Court in Philadelphia because I was so terrified. The Federal Prosecutor was gunning for my self-esteem. In the courtroom, he had a big screen set up. Projected onto the screen was an incredibly filthy extended passage of meticulously detailed anal sex that appeared in a book I had published, written by Michael Hemmingson. The Federal Prosecutor made me read it aloud in the courtroom to the Federal Judge — the Prosecutor stopping me early on and saying, “Why don’t you start again? And could you speak up, please? We want to make sure your Mom at the back of the courtroom is able to hear what you’re reading — this book that you think is such a valuable piece of literature, worthy of the Constitution’s protection.”

I testified. We won. But I closed down my business. And then afterwards I had a particularly scary encounter with Security Officials in a small airport in Exeter, England. They questioned me at length, wanting to know why I had flown in from Paris to such a small airport in England: What kind of writer are you? they kept asking me, over & over & over. And I kept lying through my teeth because I didn’t want to admit who I was; I was terrified. My friends in Bristol assured me that their Government was probably watching me, following everything I’d done since I left the airport in Exeter, everyone I spoke to or hung out with, on those Closed Circuit TV cameras that are all over England. After that,  I insulated myself. I withdrew. I became simply “a writer.” I tried not to make any more trouble. I vowed never to go back to Europe.

So things like a 17-year-old boy in a work place that has a policy of zero tolerance for sexual harassment, triggers all the wrong buttons for me, but I try to just stay calm, to keep going.

I think that because of the full moon and that lunar eclipse, the hormones among my co-workers at work have been sort of flying. I, of course, have my own hormones to deal with, regardless of any full moons. But it got intense in that kitchen, even for me. There is this really gorgeous guy I work with, who is really young, really smart, in a relationship. He did this thing that anyone working in a kitchen will do a hundred times a day, but I glanced over at him, doing this thing, and it suddenly struck me — a sexual submissive — as really provocative.  And I wondered, how come, right this minute, that looks extremely sexual to me? And I looked up at his face and he was looking right at me. I laughed nervously and looked away, walked away; I didn’t want to give myself away.

A while later, I glanced over again and he was doing that same thing, and, again, I responded in the same suddenly sexual way. And I looked up at him again and again he was looking right at me — like, in my eyes. I thought, Oh my god, he’s not really that young, is he? I think he’s a Top.

Then I was instantly wet between my legs, and really, really frustrated. I didn’t know what to do with myself or how to handle anything at all. The world is so different now. All last night, he was working right next to me and I was like Jell-O. Well, extremely frustrated, aroused, stupefyingly self-protective Jell-O.  I was really losing my mind. Every once in a while, I would steal a glance up at him to see if he was still looking at me, and he would be; he’d be looking right at me; in that relentless way a Top looks at a bottom and waits for her to tell him what she’s willing to let  him to do to her. I simply could not figure out if my mind was playing tricks on me.

At one point, he said, “I’ll be back in a minute.” I was secretly appalled that his energy was going to walk away from me for even an instant. I said, “Where are you going?” He said, “I have to go to the bathroom.” And I said — from somewhere primal and long, long ago — I said, “Which bathroom are you going to be in?” He kind of laughed and said, “Are you getting fresh with me?”

I could not believe I had said it. I was appalled at myself. I walked away, wondering, what is happening to me? what am I fucking doing?? He’s not available, he’s one of the supervisors, for godssakes,  and what about all this zero tolerance stuff? Not that I really think he would report me for sexually harassing him, but how humiliating: “She just acted really desperate and wanted to come into the bathroom with me.” Crap.

But I was totally swooning; aroused for the rest of the night. I had these pictures filling my head — thanks to that lovely Muse who seemed to have left my bedroom for once and followed me to work! He’s a man who is really into details; he wants everyone to follow the details, to do everything in a very specific way, even if it’s very complicated, because he wants a thing to be perfect. And I wanted to tell him, “You could come to my house, in the middle of nowhere, and think of some really complicated thing that you would have to teach me how to do, over & over, until I got it right; except that you would always change the rules halfway through it, so that I could never get it right, and then, of course, I’d have to be punished over & over for not paying attention…” That’s not cheating, I thought. That’s not sex. He wouldn’t be being unfaithful to anyone if he were just trying to teach me how to do something the right way and I was just sort of incapable of really learning… But of course, it’s cheating. I was just astounding myself with these crazy thought processes.

And then every time I looked at him, he’d be looking right at me.

At one point, he was leaning against the counter, doing some paperwork, and I walked up to him. He said, “Yes, Marilyn?” and I was going to blurt out, “I have a house in the middle of nowhere.” But, instead, I said, “Are you able to read minds?”

He said, “Sometimes, yeah, I can.”

I said, “Okay. That’s good.” And I started to walk away.

But he said, “Why? Do you want me to read yours right now?”

Surrendering, I said, “Yes, I sure do.”

Last night, when I got home, it was late and that full moon was shining down on that wide-open valley. The night for miles and miles was so black except for that moon, those stars, and I was outside of my house that is in the middle of nowhere. Out there in that crazy, quiet, ancient town, that doesn’t care who I am, where I’ve been, what I’m ever doing; that doesn’t pop up with some unexpected news that I might be going to prison for the thoughts that are in my head.

And I thought about that guy. That gorgeous, gorgeous guy who is so inappropriate for me in every way. And I thought about desire, how it can just spring up from who knows where and overpower me like that. I’m old enough to  know now that I will always be waiting for my Top, that man who can expertly cause me to submit and then punish me even when I get it right. That’s how I will always be and who I will always be waiting for, even though he never shows up.

I told the sky: my heart is an aching wound; my cunt is an aching wound, but my mind, with all its magnificent stories still bursting to get out of me– my mind is this wide-open valley, black as night, under a thousand shooting stars that are exploding all over the sky.  I will, indeed, hold out forever for Daddy to finally come and claim his little puta.

 

Only a broken heart

Yesterday was an intense day.

The Muse had my attention by 4:40 AM.  My eyes opened, and it felt like the Muse was filling up my whole room. I said to him (in my head): You can’t be serious.

I was facing one of my big bedroom windows, all of which are now always open, the blinds always raised. I was looking right at the huge maple tree. I could see that it was going to be a beautiful morning.  Just the kind of morning I would want to be awake for — but the Muse had kept me up until 1 AM. I’d hardly slept. I’d forgotten how, when the Muse is in my life, I hardly eat, I hardly sleep.

I know that some artists are practically haunted by the Muse. Van Gogh, of course, springs to mind.  I don’t feel haunted; but I do become sort of enveloped by a euphoric swoon. The Muse has its own energy. I feel it when it flows in — almost like a tide– and when it recedes. And when it does flow in, it is the most beautiful thing. It’s the essence of true inspiration  — as if it’s breathed into me by an angel on a mission from the Divine.

Ideas will come that seem heightened somehow; visions come that have a peculiar clarity or quality of color. And then certain words come; words that have a more intense feeling about them over other words, and I know that if I put those specific words together in a particular sentence, form paragraphs that turn into pages — I know that at that point, I can make love to the whole world.

If you aren’t a writer, this probably isn’t making any sense at all.  But it is the most beautiful feeling. And for me, the Muse always takes up residence in my bedroom, which is why I always end up with my writing desk in my room — try as I did, in the past, to keep my writing life separate from my bedroom. Eventually I just gave up, because I need my desk to be wherever the energy is. But then all my papers, all my notes, research books, photos, whatever, makes its way into my room , as well, since it becomes the only place where I can tap into the Muse. My room always ends up looking like a cyclone hit it, but it isn’t my fault. I want to tell people, “I didn’t make this crazy mess, the Muse did that!”

When writers sit and stare, seemingly for hours, it always looks to outsiders as if they aren’t doing anything at all. But, actually, when a writer sits and stares, the creative act is in process.  For the past 2 days, I have sat and stared a lot, deep in that euphoric swoon. It’s why I can’t sleep and why I forget to eat — I can’t tear myself away from my room and from how fucking beautiful everything in the world seems when I’m awake and in there.

For me, those beautiful images have to build up, until they burst through the barricade between that nonphysical place into the physical, where the words then, finally, pour out all over the page.

But while the images are building, while I’m stuck in that euphoria, life still happens. I still have to sort of “tend to things,” but it’s all filtered through that intensity and it makes my life feel very keen– aching, bittersweet.  All-consuming.  Simple things take on a momentous depth.  For instance: A birthday present arrived in the mail from one of my ex-husbands yesterday.

BTW, I am totally blessed. I have 2 ex-husbands, both of whom called me on my birthday to wish me all kinds of good things. If you consider just this blog post alone, you can readily see how being married to me is not any kind of a picnic. And if you factor in other blog posts, or most of what I’ve written in my entire life, well, it wouldn’t take a genius to figure out that I had a serious problem in the fidelity department. And my 2nd ex-husband endured the worst of it. He had an inkling of what I was like before we actually got legally married, but I don’t think he was prepared at all for the complete maelstrom of my personality and for everything else that came along with being married to me.

In fact, it took the guy who came after my 2nd husband for me to finally figure out that not everyone was going to put up with my shit. I was already 40!! — it took me that long to grow up. That guy and I fell in love the night we met — on a crowded dance floor in a tiny Puerto Rican hole-in-wall in lower Manhattan — and by our second meeting, he had me figured out. He said, “I really want you for my girl, Marilyn, but if you play me and start fucking around with dykes, I am going to mess you up. Do you understand me?” Whoa. Yes I did. (And my novel Freak Parade was born, gang. Currently free to download from Smashwords until July 31st! )

It was from my 2nd ex-husband that this birthday gift had been sent. It was a tee shirt he’d had designed specifically for me.  Neptune & Surf was my first book, and while I love pretty much everything I’ve ever had published, Neptune & Surf is my baby, my pearl, my gem. I love that book so much. And I am so grateful to the Universe that it has remained in print for 19 years already. A book that no one on Earth thought I could ever get published because they thought it was filthy porn. But I did get it published, to glowing reviews, in fact, all over the world. Neptune & Surf had been inspired by Hubert Selby Jr’s infamous novel, Last Exit to Brooklyn. I loved that book, and Neptune & Surf (named after 2 main avenues in Coney Island, in Brooklyn, NY) was a decidedly X-rated homage to that novel.

When my book came out, I sent a copy of it, along with a fan letter, to Hubert Selby Jr (nicknamed “Cubby”), out in LA. And not only did he write me back with a truly glowing opinion of Neptune & Surf, he told me that when I was out in LA again, to call him and we would have lunch.

When I was next out in LA, it was a truly high point in my life, in my career.  All the book stores there were carrying Neptune & Surfmy book, my filthy pornographic book — including Tower Books, right there on Sunset Boulevard. And with the cover facing front, not just the spine of the book showing among a million other books. I did call Cubby and he took my call right away. He was so enthusiastic about getting together. He said, “Meet me at the House of Pies.” So I did. We wound up keeping in touch until he died in 2004.

Well, this tee shirt my ex had designed for me had a picture of Cubby’s face on the front of it, and it said “Meet me at the House of Pies” and on the back, it says: Last Exit to Brooklyn.

I nearly cried. It meant so much to me. I called him right away to thank him, to tell him how much I loved it.  He said, “I’m glad. Be well, Marilyn. Work hard, okay? Keep writing. I want you to have a really good year.”

All of this happened while the Muse was hanging out with me, so my feelings about all of it swelled into a sort of fever. It felt staggering, really, that my ex could still care that much about me. That instead of dwelling on the really horrible times — things like throwing the phone at me in our beautiful Upper West Side apartment and shouting, “If you don’t call her right now and tell her it’s over, that you’re never fucking her again, you are out on your ass tomorrow” — instead of all those kinds of memories that, unfortunately, I remember really well and am not proud of; instead of that, he chose to remember one of the happiest moments in my life and to celebrate that for me.

I spent the rest of the day listening to Only A Broken Heart. I had it on repeat, and streamed it over & over & over, literally for hours, long into the night. Such a simple yet devastating song. I hung out with the Muse and just sort of looked at the truth of myself, at that marriage, and seeing finally how hard he had tried to take care of me, and how after 15 years, he just couldn’t put up with any more of my shit. Intense day.

Here comes that feeling I’ve seen in your eyes
Back in the old days before the hard times
But I’m not afraid anymore
It’s only a broken heart

I know the place where you keep your secrets
Out of the sunshine, down in the Valley
But I’m not afraid anymore
It’s only a broken heart

What would I give to start all over again
To clean up my mistakes

Stand in the moonlight, stand under heaven
Wait for an answer, hold out forever
But don’t be afraid anymore
It’s only a broken heart

What would I give to start all over again
To clean up my mistakes

I know your weakness, you’ve seen my dark side
The end of the rainbow is always a long ride
But don’t be afraid anymore
It’s only a broken heart

“Only a Broken Heart”  by Tom Petty,

© Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.

Thoughts in my car on Black Run Road

My birthday was beautiful. By dinnertime, when I was heading out to see the Mormons, it rained one of those really lovely summer rains, which makes everything that’s green look really, really green.

I took the back roads out of my little town, in a direction that I never go in, because it only leads deep into farmlands — or, to the Latter Day Saints Church. Nothing else is out that way, but, wow, is it gorgeous. So many trees, so many tall green cornfields. An old cemetery, a bunch of really old barns. The remains of the old Erie Canal here and there.

Dinner with the Mormon elders was  wonderful, and they readily accommodated my being a vegetarian. The dinner they made for me was so incredibly good.  Most of the conversation was about local archeological finds. I won’t go into the details of that now. But I’ll say that these Mormons are so kind, so knowledgeable, and what we discuss is, truly, quite fascinating to me — and something I know a lot about.

The missionaries are gone now, so it is only the elders. They did not say, “When are you going to join us and get baptized (as a Latter Day Saint)?” Instead, they say, “When can you come see us again? We’ll talk some more.” They are so loving, so patient; they have all of eternity, really, to get me to repent.

As I was driving home, along Black Run Road, it had stopped raining but everything still had that early evening, summer-rained-on look. It was captivating. I was so grateful that God had finally brought me out to the Hinterlands, the only place that has ever felt like home to me.

And, as much as I enjoyed the evening, and as much love as these people have — these men who ask such seemingly casual questions, and then listen so intently to every word I say in reply; taking mental notes, looking for that way into me: “How can we get this girl to repent?” —  I know that what stands between me and every other sect of organized Christianity is: I refuse to repent. I’m a sinner and I thrive on being a sinner; it is the only kind of woman I know how to be.

But don’t be fooled. I don’t actually believe in sin. And yet I am an ordained minister. I studied hard to get my degree, to receive my ordination. I have all the framed documents on my wall, stating all the “things I am” in connection to Our Lord, Jesus Christ. I have my Authority to marry you, or to preside at your funeral. I have my accumulated credit hours that shows I can come visit you in the hospital or in Hospice; I can counsel you if your marriage is in trouble, or if you’re enduring an unspeakable loss.

And I take it seriously. If you come to me for spiritual help, I’m with you. I can help Jesus find you; but in his own time and at your own pace — assuming you want that kind of spiritual relationship. I am not here to condemn, or to cajole, or to even persuade. I’m only here to help you allow yourself to make room for whatever needs to come in.

Like any minister, I walk daily with Christ, hourly; and I take seriously his call to me to be one of his representatives here on Earth. And what Jesus has told me as we walk together, is that there is no such thing as sin. It’s a word we made up here in the physical, which has no meaning anywhere else.  Jesus tells me that not only are we born “forgiven,” there is nothing to forgive; ever. Because the God who dreamed us into being, loves us too much to ever condemn us for anything. It is we, the physical, who condemn each other and who create words & labels, concepts & ideas.

I don’t consider myself “a sinner,” but when I view myself from the outside, as a woman who is a minister somewhere in the overarching scope of Christianity, I know I am considered a sinner, based on the overarching understanding of what they think Christ taught: I am still a bisexual fetishist, who doesn’t believe in chastity by any stretch of any definition of that word. If I were to become a Latter Day Saint (not all followers of Joseph Smith are Latter Day Saints), unless I were to live a lie,  I would only wind up being excommunicated for my irredeemable behavior, eventually. After all the truly horrible shit I’ve endured in my life, do we really need to add a label like that to who I am — excommunicated for my sex life?

On the surface, I look redeemed.  I don’t smoke anymore, but that’s only because, several years ago, it became impossible to find Chesterfield cigarettes for sale anywhere. And they were the only brand I liked, so, true to my stubborn, obstinate nature, I chose to quit smoking rather than to change brands.

I don’t do recreational drugs anymore (haven’t for a long time) because I don’t enjoy them. I barely drink alcohol anymore because my life is so intensely beautiful now, that I don’t need a drink to filter my life through anymore. (I know — all you long-time loyal readers who know me so well, must now pick yourselves up off the floor! The shock that I no longer smoke Chesterfields, I no longer drink Wild Turkey…)

And if you do still do all these things, I don’t condemn it. You’re still welcome in my home.  I would never dream of getting you to repent; what I will always, always be “guilty” of, however,  is taking every chance I can find to lead you toward clarity about the nature of Love — love yourself; watch how you talk about yourself to yourself; use your mind and open it about who you really are: Love, in spirit form, taking on the guise of a human being. For now.

That is the kind of minister I am, because that is the kind of minister I truly believe Christ has asked me to be. I can go fuck my brains out, if I want to, with all my BDSM shenanigans (and without the benefit of marriage, and sometimes without the benefit of the “opposite” sex), but when someone is in pain, or doubt, or turmoil , or crisis, or despair, then it is my job to stop fucking around and to listen to your pain and to shout at you if I have to, to get you not to go down that road to despair; to wait for Love, because Love always, always comes. Often, in a nanosecond. Of course, it is my belief that Christ can bring you that kind of Love, if you want it from him.

It’s my job to try to get you to hear, but then it’s also my job to respect whatever voice you choose to follow.

So that was my beautiful birthday, gang, and my beautiful evening drive along Black Run Road after a summer rain. And, of course, I will see the Mormons again, because I really, really cherish them. And the rest of the time, I’m here in my beautiful old house in the Hinterlands, alone with my unbelievably erotic Muse, learning all I can about the redeeming power of Love — trying to keep up with what he teaches me; trying to write it all down.

 

Another birthday swings back around!

That’s right, I’m 58 years young today!!

For you really, really, REALLY long-time loyal readers, that makes 20 (yes, twenty) birthdays I’ve shared with you online. That’s right, I’ve been online continuously since 1998! (Boy, are my typing-fingers tired…)

I will be spending my birthday dinner tonight with the Elders of the local Latter Day Saints Church (Mormons). I’m looking forward to the discussion about Kirtland, because I have since managed to get up there and see the temple and it was quite an intense experience.  (A heck of a lot of really bad things happened to the Mormons there, in the 1830s.) Even though the temple was an amazing achievement, you can  still feel the desecration that happened there, and the energy of the atrocities.

But that’s tonight…

Today, I’ll be working on the new notes for the stage adaptation of Tell My Bones, and also doing so more research for a possible re-write of the Cleveland’s Burning TV pilot — just based on some really inspiring comments a producer in LA made about how he saw the story (not a producer who is involved in the script in any way).  I was actually extremely flattered that he had a vision for it at all. Wow.

When it’s my own birthday, I like to give gifts to others just for being super cool, and kind, and for hanging out with me since the last birthday came around, so here is my gift to you guys today!

An awesome photo!

There are only 2 women in my long and illustrious life who have really, really blown me away; who have meant the world to me; who have taught me a lot about my strengths and my weaknesses; who’ve been my muses indefinitely; who I have really, really loved. One of them is Val from Brooklyn, and the other is her:

Blare N. Bitch, from the road this past week

This is Blare N. Bitch, currently of Black Sabbitch. 

She was also a founding member of another LA-based, all-girl heavy metal band, Betty Blowtorch. (FYI, link is not G-rated)

Black Sabbitch are on the road this summer, out West. This photo was taken the other day.

I’ve known Blare since 1981, when we were both (incredibly different) musicians in downtown Manhattan. And she’s actually a year older than me. So, all you young gals out there reading this — don’t worry about getting old. You don’t have to if you don’t absolutely want to. You can just age, really awesomely, as that photo will attest.

Okay! I’m gonna get to the writing table down in my kitchen and get the birthday under way here.

I leave you with this. The trailer from a truly jaw-dropping documentary film that was made about the band, Betty Blowtorch, just before tragedy struck. I don’t know if you can find the movie online anymore, but it used to be free to watch on the Internet.

Okay, gang. have a bitchin’ day! Thanks for visiting. See ya.

 

 

 

 

The world of author Marilyn Jaye Lewis