Jack’s Naughty Bits: Anais Nin, Elena

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Jack's Naughty Bits

Nin never wanted to be an erotica writer. Her diaries indicate quite clearly that
she thought erotica was a male-dominated genre in which a woman’s sense of the texture
and nuance of sexuality could never be expressed. When a “collector” of erotic books
commissioned first her friend Henry Miller and later Nin to write for a dollar a page, she
was defiant: the “poetry” of sex would be lost if she was to write sex on command. Yet
eventually she decided to try, and the results would later be published together under the
title Delta of Venus. And though Nin felt that her diaries were her true explorations
into sex as a woman, she eventually conceded that her voice also emerged in her erotica,
despite the conventions of the genre.


Now, half a century later, the situation is rather different. Erotica is no longer a
male stronghold, and much of the femininity that Nin was at pains to express has become
the stuff of erotic cliché. Reading Nin is like reading a primer in the genre, though a
very good one at that. That’s why I thought it wise to include an excerpt from the mistress
herself as both a part of, and a counterpoint to our Fiction Issue. For Nin’s project was to
inject humanity into writings on sex, and Nerve fiction means to pick up where she left off.

* * *

From “Elena” by Anaïs Nin

When she was about to come and could no longer defend herself against her pleasure, Leila
stopped kissing her, leaving Bijou halfway on the peak of an excruciating sensation, half-
crazed. Elena had stopped at the same moment.


Uncontrollable now, like some magnificent maniac, Bijou threw herself over
Elena’s body, parted her legs, placed herself between them, glued her sex to Elena’s, and
moved, moved with desperation. Like a man now, she thumped against Elena, to fell the
two sexes meeting, soldering. Then as she felt her pleasure coming she stopped herself, to
prolong it, fell backwards and opened her mouth to Leila’s breast, to burning nipples that
were seeking to be caressed.


Elena was now also in the frenzy before orgasm. She felt a hand under her, a hand
she could rub against. She wanted to throw herself on this hand until it made her come,
but she also wanted to prolong her pleasure. And she ceased moving. The hand pursued
her. She stood up, and the hand again traveled towards her sex . . . Leila’s pointed nails
buried in the softest part of Elena’s shoulder, between her breast and her underarm,
hurting, a delicious pain, the tigress taking hold of her, mangling her. Elena’s body so
burning hot that she feared one more touch would set off the explosion . . .


Elena and Leila together attacked Bijou, intent on drawing from her the ultimate
sensation. Bijou was surrounded, enveloped, covered, licked, kissed, bitten, rolled again
on the fur rug, tormented with a million hands and tongues. She was begging now to be
satisfied, spread her legs, sought to satisfy herself by friction against the other’s bodies.
They would not let her. With tongues and fingers they pried into her, back and front,
sometimes stopping to touch each other’s tongue . . . Bijou raised herself to receive a kiss
that would end her suspense . . . She almost cried to have it end.

© Anaïs Nin