"The whole thing is just complicated in terms of love and sex. I don’t know exactly what that thing is that makes you want to be someone’s lover as opposed to a friend that you love. You can feel very intense love for your platonic friends, but there’s a difference between that and someone you’re attracted to. But then it’s also possible, as the character Ian has done, to have sexual experiences that don’t involve love. So how all of those things play together is one of the great mysteries. I did explore that in the book, but I don’t have the answers so it’s more that I explored the questions."
— interview with Laura Lee author of Angel on It Matters
The irony was that regardless of what anyone else might have thought, Paul felt his love for Ian was of a much purer form than his love for Sara. This was not to say that he had not loved Sara deeply or that his motives for marrying her had been anything but sincere. But his union with her had given him social standing. He had been a respectable married man, doing what a man of his age ought to do in society. He had always understood that, as a man, one day he would fall in love, marry, and support his family. He had married her at the right age, when he felt it was time. The story existed in his mind before he even met Sara. She was the one he had chosen to cast in the role.
Ian fit no narrative at all. He could offer Paul nothing in the world. Ian did not bring social standing. If anything, he could only erode it. Yet Paul loved anyway. Ian sparked his imagination and touched his soul. That was all he could offer. Wasn’t that more pure and more sacred? It was a strange inversion of the way the world imagined it—the blessed union with Sara, the profane union with the young man.
— from the novel Angel by Laura Lee
The members of the church wanted to know the nature of their relationship. Even if they got to the heart of that mystery—if they learned “the truth,” what would they know? Only that the two of them had sex. Was that really the “nature of their relationship”? How could they ever know the “nature of their relationship”? That is something two people spend a lifetime trying to understand.
Why had God brought these two souls together? What divine force had allowed such an unlikely pair to meet and fall in love? What did it mean—to love? Why did Ian inspire Paul so? Could either of them have become what he was without the other? Of all the mysteries about Ian and Paul, whether or not they had sex was by far the least interesting.
— from the novel Angel by Laura Lee
"When people deny the love inside themselves or hide its expression, when they can’t initiate love toward one another with open hearts, they damage their souls, and by extension, the soul of humanity."
— Philip Toshio Sudo, Zen Sex
"But “dis-grace” has no place in our relationship with God. You won’t be dis-owned or dis-avowed by God. You won’t be dis-loved. You can’t be un-graced. Once granted, grace is never retracted."
— Jay Bakker
Fall to Grace: A Revolution of God, Self & Society
As a writer, how do you begin to describe a kiss? This is the topic of my guest post today at Bibrary Book Lust.
A kiss, a first kiss especially, is not only a touch, it is an emotion. It is a question, an invitation that can be accepted or denied. “Will you be my lover?”
It is that most vulnerable of moments, full of nervousness and anxiety, and it is also one of the anxieties that is most quickly relieved. It melts away the moment the lips touch and the invitation has been accepted.
“And then they kissed,” was not going to cut it.
For guidance, I ventured onto Google Books and found myself reading an 1873 magazine called The Galaxy. There, in an article called “The Curiosities of Kissing” I discovered this observation by William Conant Church:
“Shakespeare calls kisses holy, lovely, loving, gentle, jealous, soft, sovereign, warm, and righteous. He has over two hundred and fifty allusions to kisses and kissing in his plays, and in the second part of ‘Henry VI.’ he speaks of ‘twenty thousand kisses.’ In the ‘Midsummer Night’s Dream’ he calls lips ‘those kissing treasures.’ But in all his writings we find no full description of a kiss. It was a subject too vast even for Shakespeare’s mighty mind.”
Realizing that I had stumbled onto a problem that had stumped Shakespeare made me feel a little bit better about myself, and so I got back to work.
What was my solution to this conundrum? Read the rest at Bibrary Book Lust.