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Last night, by my front door, my box of books

arrived from Amazon: How to Do Your Own Divorce

in California, and two other books:

one on vaginal fisting, and the other book

Kimba the White Lion, a video whose script formed

the basis for The Lion King. (Okay. One’s a video. I lied. Book

me.) My son’s books

don’t know the first

thing about morality. But Kimba does. He was the first

creature I wanted to be other than myself, long before books

gave me Charlotte in her Web, the Amazons. Kimba showed

me the fist

was not the mightiest organ. Rather the brain, though barely

larger than a fist

can be subtler and more effective. Fist-

ing (I know this from more than books)

is effective because the fist

fills the vaginal space like the head of a baby, whose fist

clenching & unclenching will tease a mother’s nipple to

embarrassed life, to divorce

from its role as sexual. Or not. Depending on decisions

mental (not moral). The fist

can make breasts as tender as a pregnancy or a baby’s fist-

of-a-suck. Which hurts. Make no mistake about it (These

basics form

the basis for all other oral and tactile and carnal forms

of pleasure whether mawed, mauled, sacrificial, superficial,

penetrating or, indeed, fist-

ed, and are at least at first

painful to one partner, though they may later feel

voluptuous). Just as first-

born children are notorious for being a mixed blessing. How first

you crack the egg, then you scramble it. Take fist-

ing. The first

time you come, you may cry, scream, bleed. A first

page warning in A Hand in the Bush, my new book

on fisting, proclaims that a casual fist can kill. A first

chapter covers latex, safe sex, cautiousness. I

hate this book. If asked by a new partner or

a good friend, I would say first

“Fisting is mental, not moral. Who cares how many

fingers get inside? Divorce

teleology from terminology. Sex from sense.” Divorce

one idea from another idea, one book from another,

though they may at first

arrive in the same box like twins. Form

binds. Form combines. Form liberates. Form

a marriage and the stiff form

of all heterosexual culture will fall on you like

starch. The first

love affair contains the form

of every love after. Is probably the mother. The form-

al principle states that symmetry is more beautiful than a

lopsided, singular pattern. Yet Shiva bears a fist

on one side, a palm on the other. Perhaps opposites form

a kind of symmetry also. The singular form

of a woman is lush, bushy, marvelous. But a woman, whose


has run low on funds, her home to be sold at auction, is booked

on the foreclosure form

posted in the foyer as “Ms. Myra Hill, an unmarried woman.” So

I wonder whether divorce

is truly un-marriage, or another thing altogether: Divorce:

a state of altered being, transformational, like the trinity of ice,

water and steam. Divorce

me. Will I be an “unmarried” then? Formally single? Singular?

The trick is not to form

needless connections in the first place, nor tense muscles you

do not need to use. Divorc-

ing tricks the mind into thinking you can unscramble eggs. Diverse

sources say maybe you can. I’d like first

to try out divorce

from a perspective divorced

from civilization, unification. Clarification: Is the nude

beautiful because we imagine a symmetry, a pair of eyes

watching her? Her counterpart, a fist,

as if nudity were always in dialogue. I think I’ll never fist

again, if it must be as the book

says: latex, safe sex, disconnections. I could write the book.

Marriage creates something larger. A fist

Is more than the bent bodies of fingers. At first,

It’s a little like creating a baby: marriage forms

A third life form, an Us. Intimacy, also, is a book

read slowly. A lover looking down at a lover’s fist

Rising like a baby in her pubic cavity can hold the form

Of two (or one) long enough, to divorce

Here from now, there from later. Divorce

Is the word you don’t write in Holy Books,

An arithmetic you cannot scribble with a fist

Of fingers. Divisible yet indivisible. An order of books

from Amazon. Why use more fingers than fit. At first.

This poem first appeared on NERVE in 2001.