It’s an art form, really, though your prude mom would challenge you on that. How could that be art?
Hips in rotation. Outward-facing thighs. The arch of the back letting the ass be emphasized, idealized, idolized.
This queerly idolatrous worship.
Him, there beneath this form of my body. His face proximate, his hands on my thighs or my hips or my cheeks. I feel his breath. That quickening, that anticipation. I know it from before. Not his name, not his life story. In my phone, his name is “The Bronx” ‘cause that’s where he lives. All I know is the velocity of his excitement. His breath on my body.
We are familiar strangers.
I scooch back a little. I am trying to invite him in. To give him a sign that I want it and that I want him to want it. Mutual desire. Then, it happens: The soft tissue meets soft tissue. Tongue in, and all around. Rapture, a deep moaning, the clenching of his forearms. My hands gently gripping, gently steering him in. I throw my head back sometimes, roll it around my neck, giving a bit of theatrics for him because that’s what men like him like, men on the DL or men who live straight lives but have sex with men. They want my pleasure. To see it, to hear it, to feel it on their tongue. This femme and fat body our society tells us is not meant to be desired, that these men are not meant to want — to them, I am freedom. Freely living in my body and my way. I give no fucks and that’s what they like.
Still, I remain nothing more than a fantasy for men like him, a fantasy at night they think over when alone, or with their boys, or with their girl.
A fantasy they get to live out when I let them.
When I so choose.
On the subway in my tight pants and shirt, when going down the street in my short shorts, giving them thickboy MexiRican struts and strides, men like him stare at me. Men all masculine, all macho macho, feast on me in averted glances. I do not idealize their straight masculinity like I am told to do in queer culture. I like masculinity in men; I like femininity in men. Men who sag their pants and men who wear high heels. Men with bellies and men with ribs poking through skin. Trans men and people who don’t identify as men. I like all kinds, what can I say?
This femme and fat body our society tells us is not meant to be desired, that these men are not meant to want — to them, I am freedom.
There are no words from me, no words from him, no need for words when I am sitting on his face. It’s all body, baby, all body sounds. Visceral and vertiginous. The throat rumblings and mmmmms in abundance. Those good vibrations full of meaning. Tongue swish and tongue lick telling me he wants me, all this mass, all this ass. Stretch marks and full tits and sagging belly — who wants that? Straight and gay cultures alike tell us we should want six-pack bellies, chiseled chests, hard asses to fondle. This straight-identified man who no one knows is here in this room with me — this man who people say is filled with self-hatred for not coming out as gay, bi, or queer, for living a life they deem a lie — desires me. Straight, yes, because he identifies with that lifestyle, with chasing women and talking about women to his boys and getting married to women. He admits he is a man who has sex with men. He has no problem identifying that way. He just doesn’t identify with gay, bi, or queer because in his day-to-day world, his social reality, he doesn’t live that life. He has no intention of shouting out on social media the mind-blowing sexual encounter with a man he had last night. He has no plans on going to the queer bar on Friday night for a drink with friends. He has no desire to fall in love with a man.
This straight man wants my body. Wholeheartedly. Gay culture doesn’t desire bodies like mine and these are supposedly my people. Who do I identify with, then? Is it this straight man who is a single father who works as a security guard at night on 42nd Street, this man whose tongue is in my body? Or am I to identify with the out and proud white gay men living downtown in Chelsea or the Village, sequestered away on the topmost floor of their million-dollar apartments, with their two adopted children and live-in nanny from Mexico or the Philippines or Barbados?
Here I am despite it all, sitting on this man’s face, worshipped by him and worshipping him.
This body he wants to devour.
This body I let him devour.
His hands grip me, tight. His tongue is a squishy forcefulness that doesn’t let me sink into pleasure, into that rapture. Am I liking this? He doesn’t give me a chance to think on it because he’s flipping me over, onto my belly, ass up.
He’s a big man, a strong man, and I’m a big boy, no doubt, but I’m scared of what he could do to me. Knowing what straight men who have sex with men can do and have done to others. When they are told no, when they are met with our limits, they can change. No longer the benign man eating you out but instead the man who is punching and kicking you, angry at you because you are you, unapologetically. In such a fit of rage, he can quite possibly even end your life. We queers know these horror stories, coded, as they are, into our DNA.
This position he has me in is fine depending on the guy. I prefer this position with a guy I have hooked up with several times or know well. I prefer men underneath me. Squat on them I think of myself as a weighted mass, something smothering, something indomitable. This fat body, these tits and chichos, where the white boys in the locker room all throughout high school pinched and prodded me, cornering me against hard, cold tile, calling me a fat spic, a fat faggot. I know what it’s like not to have a body even though I exist in one. This is probably why I have not dated or hooked up with a white person in 10 years and am only with men of color. This body bears the violent memories of their touch.
Underneath me, these men beneath my weight, I feel I have control. Control over what they can do to my body and how they can do it. A little bit of control over what happens to my body in a world where I otherwise have no control over what might happen to it.
But here, on my belly, ass up, he is devouring me in a way that I worry will be total. Fearing again, like I did years ago in that locker room with all those skinny white boys, that my body will not be my body. Fearing I will be devoured and nothing will be left of me.
I don’t like when men sit on my face. I like when they are on their back, legs up and squat, all relaxed, looking at me as I go to town. Rubbing their thighs, kissing them, making them comfortable. I like seeing a man vulnerable in this way. Letting me care for him in this way. Especially DL men or straight men. Men who frequently deny themselves the pleasures of the body, the pleasures of being with another man, and particularly the pleasures of the anus. They’re told it’s taboo for them to be touched or licked or penetrated in the ass. I like this giving up of the world and its rules as they do there on their back, legs up, ass in my mouth.
The ass is supposed to be the most shameful part of the body. Shameful, in part, because it signifies queer sex. The ass is where the waste of our body exits, and gives us relief, a relief of release that feels good, mildly exciting, even pleasurable. Where a stimulation otherwise unimaginable can occur by ourselves with fingers and dildo, or with others with a tongue, fingers, penis. Where we can just be bodies that feel and moan and shiver and orgasm without the need for words, for the language we have been given.
The ass is an opening into a world that doesn’t have to be this one.
These men I sleep with are most free when they are on their back with legs up in the air. Allowed to just lie awhile, to manspread in receptive opening.
My tongue across their soft tissue is their momentary liberation.
My tongue moving in our queer language.
I put his hands on my hips. I press them into my flesh knowing he is gentler, a lot more passive than the other men I hook up with. I arch my back further, letting myself sink into his tongue, his mouth, his beard, his face, giving him what he wants, what he needs, what we desire.
He’s more calculated with his movements than most men. Not fast and ravenous like other guys are, guys assuming that is what is most pleasurable to me. He does wider strokes with his tongue. He gives more attention to the micromovements at the tip of it. He moves slowly. He reaches depths previously untraversed. He presses in ways no one else has. He doesn’t take a lot of breaths and this consistent effort feels amazing. The in and out, and all around, airless, there beneath my weight, the weight of this body he finds sexy, plunging in with his thick, long tongue. As if he were working at something, as if my ass were a canvas and his tongue a brush, as if he were writing his magnum opus into my body.
Being devoured by me through his own devouring.
Where did he learn this from? He’s a few years younger than me, 22 or 23, a 6’5” gay man looking for love. He likes me. Likes me too much, in fact, but I do not like him that way. I can never reciprocate though he is gorgeous, though he can use his tongue like no man I have ever met. Whether in spoken word at the bar or the text messages sent throughout the day, he and I do not speak the same language. In the jokes we like to laugh at, in the way we think about the problems of the world, how we like to tell the stories of our lives to one another. He and I can only be he and I when we are sharing our bodies, our asses and tongues and dicks.
To describe these scenes of sitting on men’s’ faces in words is merely to produce a bad imitation. But the words are all I have.
What I like most about him is how passive he is. He lets me dominate him. Guiding the back of his head between my cheeks, telling him “harder” or “faster” or “softer,” riding him on the couch as much as I want. I love him for this. For being a passive top. A lazy top, even. Where I can be in control of his body, gauging how much pleasure he and I receive, attentive to what his body needs. What I like most of all about his passivity is how it feels like a way of caring for him. A way of caring for his body. This boy, this first-generation Latinx boy born and raised in the Bronx, raised without a father and wanting a man to be a father to him. He wants to be cared for by a man. He wants me to care for him and his body. His body tells me this, and I listen.
To describe these scenes of sitting on men’s’ faces in words is merely to produce a bad imitation. It is never sufficient, never adequate enough to represent what unfolds in the flesh. But the words are all I have. Worded aftermaths of the sensations, my body vibrating pleasure, his organ in me. In the description of the scene is a totally different scene from the one I experience in person. It is a re-creation, an act of creation. I emphasize, I exaggerate, I speculate. Through words, our bodies become art.
Because without these words, these scenes of us, these men and I can be nothing else. We are erotic matches but not romantically or emotionally compatible. Our relation is an abbreviated intimacy, a here or there spanning across a week, months, and sometimes even years. We depart through bedroom doors, maybe with the intention of a next time, maybe not. We might text on occasion, a “how are you doing,” or a description of what we want to do to one another. We don’t need to fit into models of intimacy and coupling that don’t work for us because our being together is just as wondrous, just as valuable, as a marriage or any other arrangement. The form of our art is this exhilarating brevity, this intensity and duration across time and space, the exhale and inhale of pleasure across our bodies. We are but momentary beings and that’s the beauty of us. ●
This story is part of a weeklong series about how we have sex now.
I am an essayist and critic living in New York City. My memoir about growing up a gay son of an undocumented Mexican immigrant and a poor Puerto Rican mother in white America, Pedro’s Theory, is forthcoming from Melville House. My essays can be found or are forthcoming at LitHub, The New Inquiry, In
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