Introduction to /Slant/Sex/
Our last issue featured the poetry edition of our /Slant/Sex/ folio; I am pleased now to introduce the prose and art edition.
As in the previous edition, we feature works that broach a wide range topics in relation to the sexualities of women and transgender and genderqueer folks.
Although there is joy and celebration of sexuality here—as in Sinclair Sexsmith’s very hot evocation of butch and sex desire and Rebecca Swan’s deliciously voyeuristic Personal Taste —there is also a great amount of pain in these pieces. A quote from Melissa Febos’s fascinating essay “Manginalogues” puts it well: “Anyone that deals with issues of sexuality in their art, the pain always comes out, and we don’t always talk about the pain.”
Many of these pieces deal with the pain of our bodily existence, and many explore the complexity of our bodies’s desires.
TC Tolbert, in “Why would a beautiful girl like you want to be nothing but a boring old man?” writes, “You know that there are bodies who wake up in other bodies. That the laying on of hands is a gift.” The works in this folio are also gifts: layered and difficult navigations that often find ways through the pain into great pleasure. Sometimes, sex is something like survival—sex in all its strange and grotesque drives—and all the miraculous ways we survive. As Debbie Ann Ice puts it, sex is What We Do.
There is also plenty of sex-positive feminism to be found among these pieces. I’m particularly pleased to be including a piece from Midori, educator, writer, and an important figure in the kink community. I’m also thrilled to be publishing photos by Tomoaki Hata from the underground queer scene in Japan in the 90’s, accompanied by an interview by former DB contributor Jai Arune Ravine with Hata and C Snatch Z., one of the performers featured in the photos. And American Able is a wry, witty, and sexy response to the desexualization of folks with disabilities.
Our fiction selections offers poignant love stories where sex is a form of awakening of identity, where the overwhelming force of love takes its own unanswerable shape, where desire and attraction create a new kind of family.
And fair warning: as appropriate to the more explicatory nature of the forms of prose and visual art, some of the pieces in this folio contain explicit descriptions and representations of sex, bodies, and sexual situations that may not be appropriate for readers under 18 years of age, and perhaps not the best browsing material at work or other public places.