That phrase figured in the legal language in determining what was obscene back in the day when the prosecutors and the courts cared. If dicks got hard or cunts got moist, then something was obscene. You don’t need so arcane a phrase as that when one is dealing with kiddie porn. Since we are rapidly moving toward a post-literate age, nobody is particularly worried any longer about Molly Bloom’s soliloquy from Ulysses.

I’m having one of those afternoons where J is home, decompressing from work. Part of relaxing from work is watching The Waltons, a preachy show about liberal virtues that J finds heartwarming and I find annoying. I’m in one of those lazy moods, still a little groggy from the pain meds. There is a certain virtue in letting things pass that aren’t important. I learned that from a hair stylist in Georgetown, who was dying from AIDS. I remember those days.

Which takes me back to prurient interest. I can create a sexual fantasy around darn near anything, the smell of Lapsang Souchong tea, a rose, a Monroe. Letting desire build, letting our environment invite erotic reverie are not lost arts, just neglected activities. I’m just sitting with no TV on, no access to the web, except what I am writing now.

And my mind has wandered to how thrilling it is to engage in a deep, lingering, and spit-swapping kiss, or to revel in the feel of naked skin on naked skin, or the sound of my lover moaning with pleasure. Intimate. Yes. And totally life affirming.