Category Archives: The Red Room

The Red Room

call me wound that never heals & we will meet in my bedroom & i will show you what happens to the perception of time what happens to our concepts of desire what happens to power in my bedroom (Penny Goring, Ornamental Vagina. Illustration: L.W.Eden, © copyright 2015)



I considered myself

with my many rooms

my chambers

and closets

For everyone I hold a key

thought I

till the day

you revealed to me

the key

to a door

whose existence

had escaped me.

Indescribably at ease

you slide

you turn

and enter…

A magnificent chamber

whose virginity

astounds both you and me

Lips hand-in-hand, as


We bathe in the

lush, the


crimson walls

in the light

of complicity’s opiated


of a glutinous sin

that is not

to be called such…

Our meeting point, our playroom

an exquisite discovery:



unwittingly though

Where do you go


quicken your step?

will you leave me here


Though drowned in the heat of red

I shall shiver

with cold

if you leave me


Stay awhile…

Force me not

to live

with such deliciousness

blanched by dustsheets

my velvets untouched:

my chamber

Furnished yet


( from The Red Room )

Favourite Shirt


favourite short blogpost picture
Copyright © Pia Ines




I want you to wear me

like your favourite shirt;

close to your skin –

for your fingers to linger

on the buttons, on the rims

as you smooth me across your chest

smiling at the mirror to know

how I look best on you.


I want to be that collar

that may kiss your nape all evening –

play with your hair


as it brushes my mouth and makes me glow


in a way that only you and I may know

about lips upon skin upon hair

upon skin…

about limbs…

lost in limbs…


I want to be your favourite shirt in summer

with nothing between us but the odour of our seasons

you granting me every reason

to saunter where I will;

ride the smoothness of your back

nestle in your armpits

tuck myself in your slacks

hug your waist

as we sit…

I’d get to follow you everywhere

with no-one suspecting

why that smile

plays for more than a while

on your lips as you smooth

again and smooth again

and smooth never enough

that favourite shirt

from the collar


down to my hips.


(from The Red Room)



Chef d’oeuvre

Poo edit 2014-11-14




Hello you lovely people. It’s been a while. What’ve you been up to?


unprophetic magisterial


unpainted heft;

impersonality registers departure; mind

word, within fades; wisdom deflected

stars stuck widow;

red globe theory ambush; thing maybe

was the I, self-locked

plywood scenes explode; paperback

abdominal nervous comfort; female roast

masking tape

I like beautiful things as you can see…

Going up the stairs to my living room, every guest meets this one eye to eye. Normally, I don’t even comment on it, I just stand back and take note; watch how people react to having it shoved into their face. Some say nothing at all and walk on by. Others’re quite shocked, if they say so or not. You can see the conflict negotiated in their facial muscles. Then there’re those who find it quite amusing or ask me something about it. Whatever the reaction, I get an insight into my visitor and a feeling for how to deal with them in future; you never get a second chance to make a first impression.

Everything you see here is for sale. For the right price you can walk off with anything that takes your fancy… That one’s nice, isn’t it? The Temptation of St Antoine. Watch your head. This used to be an old barn. Some of the beams are low.

I spent over ten years in and out of museums and galleries. Three weeks in Paris every summer, soaking up culture. Especially with my second wife, Marianne. Hélène, my third wife, was a blockhead. I don’t think she’s ever read a book in her entire life. She thinks she’s smart, but a person’s face’ll always tell you if they’re bright or not. And I don’t care how much of an effort she goes to with her make-up and her hair-do, when I look at her now, all I see is a face that looks like a pair of skidded knickers.


thing maybe was the I. amputating itself

Know what I love about art? What? You can’t talk about it and about progress in the same breath. Art cancels all thought of progress, of movement towards an absolute good. It shows us for what we are: constantly plagued by abdominal nervous the same old Question. Would you agree with me that the Image is subordinate to the Idea? A sign of the Sign, with Man (I mean you as well of course) of course desperately clutching to some semiotic turf or another for fear of slipping off into that unbearable place?

Take a look at this one. Have you ever seen a tackier, more peevish frame in your entire life? Picture’s a masterpiece, far as I’m concerned. But that frame? What an eyesore! At first I wanted to dump it and get a decent one, something ornate and gilded. And just as I was about to, I thought, hey no, don’t do that! Keep the original frame for its documentary value. Show it to some poncy fat-arsed historian, they ought to know a thing or two, might even take it off your hands for a pretty price and have it on show in a museum somewhere with people less cultured than me straining to hear what he has to say, to hear his story, vivid for the moment but which’ll recede soon to be usurped by its own unreality, soon to becousin our dreams. That, essentially, is the problem with language; it’s a lie with complete faith in itself. To speak is to lie and to want to be lied to. But I’m digressing. Point is: I kept the frame.

That one twist more, that one step further in the proclivities of your imagination, and the ugly is ugly no more. Just goes to show; there is no truth, but that we make it. String half a dozen people in front of a work of art, each will come to a different truth. What is art? Who decides what’s precious? Who, authorised to confer such an etiquette on an item; to brand the hide of the cow? Am I the masterpiece? Why am I not the masterpiece? There is no art. No science, at least no justifiable border between the two. There is only… imagination, desire and the quest; need, the willingness to construct that other world which is so much more beautiful, more reliable than the one we live in. What is truth? Truth is every single man… Anyhow, some first class Czech impressionistic paintings hanging in my bedroom. Show you later. Maybe.


The innocence, the joy, the fear of discovery. Too many had told her why she should not do-think-say-ask-try the things she did-thought-said-asked and tried.

Fuck you all.

Fuck all of you!!!

My life.

My way.


– Open it.

– What is it?

– Just open it.

He shook the box: light…

She smiled.

– No! Don’t open it until I’ve gone.


– And?

She grinned at him three days later.

– I made a blood sausage with it. Blood sausage with horse chestnuts. Delicious!

(adapted from The Red Room)

‘honest, ‘dirty’, explosively direct. Natural, classy and intelligent.’ (Goodreads)

‘Joan B. delivers the goods, spot-on. if all you’re looking for is shades of grey, don’t enter The Red Room.‘   (Kulturfabrik, Luxembourg)


in silence



You need not fear me anymore


Or rather,

you need not fear her anymore:.

for she has gone

she won’t

trouble you from now on:

I have put her back to where she was

before you came along.



I thought there would be


for her

in my life


I realize now that there still isn’t

if I am to continue

the life I lead now


Better keep her under lock





as though I am

talking about some

hideous monster

doesn’t it:


horribly dangerous that


seems able to cope with

and not

that I am talking about


natural; something

as innocent

as curious…


Something legitimate



back home she goes

where we can both live

safe from harm.


If only

it would not cost me

so much


to keep her

in her



Never have I been so


in all my life –


in the middle

of the day so that my only option

was to lay down

my head


close my eyes to

such insuperable




Until my mind walked the

bridge between my


and the

effort I expended daily to


the Woman

in me.


And there I was

fearing another pregnancy!


In a sense, I am;

with child, though she will

never be born;

never grow to be strong



or the source of pleasure to my eye…


My secret she will forever remain –

my Jew in the attic:

I look in from time

to time –

she may stay

provided she keeps a




And when no-one’s about, I stay

a little longer –

move a little closer;

strike up a conversation

which is always amazing


Why, I ask myself

why should anyone fear

something so wonderful;

why should she

have to



And in moments of intense


I refuse to hide her:


I let her come



And she may live:


On paper.



(from The Red Room. Illustration: In Silence, by Naomi Brosnan)


I want to do to you
as the sunlight to the soles of the leaves
as the night to our sighs
before joy inebriates us to sleep.

I want to do to you
as birdsong, tossed recklessly to the arms of the sky
as the brook to the pebbles’ moss
furled at her feet.

I want to do to you
as the forgotten strand of hair to the skin
as the horizon laced to our deepest wish
galloping, galloping.

I want to do to you
as the murderous downpour to the
new-born petal
as the meteor
searing the flesh
of the violet night
as the beast to the virgin…

I am the thunder to your stars
I am the blossom
I am the rock.

I am the silence of your heartbeat
stilled by the temple of our love.

I am the fire to your fears
I am the church-bell to your devout ears.

I am the bud
thrusting to life
in your sunshine.

I am that moment:
frozen green.

I am the valet to your needs.

I am you, you are me
in a pyre, the debris of our limbs
fanned by our blessed mournful cries.

I am the musk to your rose
pining my name when I have
drinking my smell as it hovers
on in a languid mist
over your golden cornfield.

I am the joyous fly
in your silken

I am ocean
I am language
I the vagabond
scouring your territory
for I want to do to you:

as the butterfly to the heart of the child

as the salt to the pearls in her sea

as the candle to the night

as sunlight to Bernstein.


(from The Red Room)

Perfume: yellow up the front, brown up the back

I am as I am
I please whom I please
What is it to you
What has happened to me
Yes, I did love someone
Yes, this someone loved me
As young kids love each other
How to love one another
And that with such glee…

Can be mean little buggers as well, though, can’t they? They’ll slit open animals for the fun of it and lie through their teeth. They’re the best and worst in us in miniature. Whatever.


I love the smell of you. After you had gone the other day, I refused to wash myself. She came home later, wanting, the usual, but I couldn’t touch her. She slept on her side of the bed and I on mine. (Yes, she recollected, he had pulled her to that side of the bed…) I on mine, enveloped in the odour of your juice and sweat. She? She washes at least ten times a day, how’s a man supposed to get excited if he doesn’t have the smell of you in his nose? We wash far too often. Should only wash when we really need to. You should get Him not to wash for a while so he stinks of man, then you give him a royal blow job, he’ll spray like a whale, I swear.
You, you smell fantastic, your tight, juicy foufoun. I read a book once, in French it’s called Le Nez; The Nose. Know it? It’s about a man who kills virgins so he can use their odour to produce the ultimate perfume. That’s one crazy shit, but I understand him. When I sniff my fingers, hhmm, I smell you. I run my fingers under my nose right in front of her, and remember you. I’m not going to wash that bedsheet. Going to keep it somewhere safe so I can smell you when I want to.

My wedding day, right? First marriage, and I’m at my in-laws. The future bride and her parents had gone to the hairdresser’s. We were celebrating the wedding at home, so the bride’s family had asked a neighbour to help out with serving the guests. She was a young, unattractive girl. Come and help me, come and scrub my back for me, I called out to her. She came and scrubbed my back. Thick as a plank, she was. Get in the tub…  She was a country lass and boy, did she smell of c(o)untry. I moved my head down there to get a whiff of her, but believe me, one whiff was enough, even for a man like me. We had a real good shag right there in the bathtub. Then I got dressed and got married.

In the village of my childhood, you wore your underwear for the whole week and washed at the weekend. (Girls as well?) of course girls as well! The air was rank by Friday! And our culottes yellow up the front, brown up the back. (You look happy at the recollection of it…) of course I was happy! Life was simple, but sweet… This is the smell I have in my nostrils till today. This smell, this innocence, of unwashed sex.
In the old days, all the children slept in one bed. Of course there was incest going on. So what? You always hear about fathers raping their daughters. Now you listen to me. Half the time, it’s not rape at all. Those girls want it. They want to make the experience, then when they get jealous of their fathers, they accuse him of rape to get their own back and the poor bastard ends up in prison. We were kids, but we weren’t doing anything abnormal, see? Kids are like this. Kids are sexual beings, too.
Boys were trying it out amongst themselves as well of course they were. I saw my brother get buggered by the boy next door. He was a good bit older than us and he’d often come over to sleep at our place on a Saturday night. Once I heard these noises coming from my brother’s bedroom. I went in, flicked on the light. My brother was on his knees, this other big boy had him by the hips and was giving him a royal humping. I think I said something like; you dirty bastards, that’s what girls are for! I think I also grabbed something and beat my brother across the backside with it. He knows I saw him though we’ve never openly spoken about it. See, it was just like that and do you think things have changed? Are you saying that I come from a family of mental cases? (So, who was humping you…?) I’ll tell you one thing, though: it doesn’t smell the same…

I am as I am
And it’s right that way
What more do you want
What more must I say…

(preview from Verses Nature, first published in The Red Room )