Is There Any Other Kind?


Is There Any Other Kind?

for Anne Sexton and the Lonely Masturbator


So I went to the library today and while I was in there figured

maybe I should give her another chance

so I picked up a copy of her collected poems

and since I was there already and when I saw it

it made me laugh I grabbed a copy of

The Man With The Hoe And Other Poems

by Edwin Markham, too


turns out the dude was really just into his gardening tool

and everyone who’s ever checked out her collected poems

immediately turned to page 198 and The Ballad Of The Lonely Masturbator

and then they just stopped there and gave up turning to something else

because when you pick up the book it automatically opens there

to that page and that poem, its spine breaks there

and then that’s it


masturbation followed by nothingness followed by a silence

that sounds like the moon


so I figured hell, might as well restart there

where her masturbator is lonely

but really, is there any other kind?


when I’m masturbating odds are

I’m alone and also lonely

and if I’m masturbating and I’m not alone

I’m not lonely, right?

because I’m not alone?

and also I’m probably thinking something like

why am I doing this all by myself over here?

this is just silly

we’re supposed to be doing this together

why don’t you get over here and “say nice things to me”

ala Matchbox Twenty songs and shit

why wouldn’t you be over here giving me a hand?


Historical Note: the key to not crying while you’re doing yourself

is significantly dependent on one’s ability to not think

about the fact that you probably wouldn’t be masturbating

if the one you’re hung up on wasn’t someplace else getting


her Prunus spit on by some dude who still reads Hustler

don’t even start thinking about whether he’s better at love-banging her

then you or if his penis is bigger or crooked in an oddly pleasing way

because you remember hearing someone saying something about that

somewhere, how the oblong’d shape is sometimes preferable

to the unflexablly straight


don’t even start thinking about the fact that right now some other dude’s

crooked dick is getting the gal you love off


because if you start thinking that way

when you’re masturbating, or when I’m masturbating

well I’ll tend to Hulk-out a little bit


and cease being gentle in a situation where the occasion calls

for one to be at least a little bit gentle

and instead of the sympathetic romance of my hand going down on me

or however you’re supposed to put it

it starts to look more and more

like I’ve just lost another 75 cents in the Diet Coke vending machine

and I’m just punching myself

in the dick


Sex marries the bed over and over again

but I don’t have a bed anymore

so I’m pretty much single



when slept in alone

scare the fucking Strangers out of me

for years now when I sleep

if I’m sleeping

I’ve signed myself a precarious pre-nup

with the couch


my loneliness has its own library

loves jerking off

but well read

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