Posts Tagged ‘Daphne Devina’


Pure Pleasure

In the dark, she reached for his hair, soft and short in her fingers. His face was hidden, lit from the street by dimly illuminated curtains, his shoulders loomed broadly over her, supported by lean arms that gripped the sheets beneath her. Sometimes he moved to her head, or her back, or her hips, to pull her fiercely against him.

She didn’t need to see his face. She knew that he gazed intently at her, as he moved his hips into her, then out and back again. She moaned and threw her pillow in one swooping motion, from behind her head, onto the floor.

He was an enthusiastic lover, and in fact, the term lover was more appropriate than she ever could have dreamed. He loved. He loved everything about her, and this was something that she was coming to realize, slowly. Sloooowly. Concealed within the dark room, within her enveloping bed, her thoughts occasionally strayed from his body and what he was doing to her, or with her, to a wonderment, an amazement. ‘So this is what making love is’, she thought. Quite different from having sex, even great sex.

He was enthusiastic, yes, and came equipped with the endurance of an athlete trained to paddle for many miles, to race bikes, to swim. He had mind-over-body stamina, older, more experienced, not the wam-bam of youth followed by the deepest of sleeps.

Not this man.

And they laughed. She laughed as hard as she’d ever laughed. As hard as the top five memorable laughs of her life.

One sunny afternoon, they’d stretched out in a room full of books, on a bed next to windows that looked out over sky and trees. Squirrels, butterflies and wind, the sun danced in warm air.

She suggested a game. She wasn’t sure, she said, that she knew where her g-spot was, if she had one in fact. They looked online for information as to where this mysterious spot might be, and he laughed when they found the best information on Men’s Health, in an article titled, “How to Find your Girl’s G-spot.” He noted the use of the term “girl.”

Two inches in and on the top side closer to the belly button, palm up, curious fingers curled, exploring. That’s the spot, the article said, that sometimes makes a woman feel like peeing. Or wait, maybe not there. Maybe farther in, just about where that rough patch is. He patiently, she thoughtfully. Until she was so filled with mirth at the humor of it all that laughter exploded in great gales. Swells of laughter that wouldn’t stop, and he with her, laughing.

Perhaps a man’s partner might not have one at all. It wasn’t something that had been defined and documented. It was too ethereal. Perhaps it was all something like an urban myth. A rumor that certainly demanded some serious (since he was a scientist) scientific and methodical investigation. A taking of notes.

Finally she admitted, breathless between laughter, that she’d known all along where it was. Well, at least she thought she knew where it was but wasn’t quite sure and maybe could use some more exploring. He, looking directly into her eyes, she gazing back, gasping, unabashed at the frank and honest pleasure that passed between them.

And with that, they watched the sun set gently behind trees until nothing was left of the day, nothing left but the night stretching before them.

‘Is this what it feels like to be in love?’ she asked herself. She rolled the word around on her tongue. She’d asked a friend, “How do you know when you’re in love?” The friend answered, “If you ask the question, then you probably are.”

She thought about how she’d felt when he’d returned from a five-day trip to the east coast, how something had changed when he walked into her kitchen. She’d always been more of a pragmatist, a little cynical, more than a little short on romance.

Now she wrapped her arms around this very sweet man, a man who missed her, who couldn’t wait to see her, had rushed over as soon as he could, had pressed he mouth to hers and held her like he never wanted to let go. With more than a little disbelief, she relented. Yes, this was a possibility.

About the author: Daphne Devina is an essayist and artist with an irrepressible curiosity about life, adventure, and especially men. Join her as she explores a new world of irresponsibility after many years of juggling career, kids and marriage. Can she finally “have it all?” Can she reawaken passion in a body long dormant?

  • This is the third and last installment in a series written for Madison Lake Pages. Read here Part 1 and Part 2.


Communing with the Moon: first weekend away

From an evening sky just turned dark, the moon rises. Bare branches reach, striving – for what? The moon seems to ask, “What time is it?” And replying silently, she said, “Time stops, there is no time, it stops here.”

Salt spray drifted on breezes straight from the tops of high-surf-warning waves. At 2 pm on a sunny (for now) afternoon, foggy mist and clouds promised arrival along with a very high tide.

She looked north along the desolate and brutal beach to where the man had disappeared. She saw his barefoot tracks in wet sand. “This is a never-turn-you-back-on-the-sea kind of day,” she thought. Tide brought one wave closer, too close.

Out of the mist from the north the man came. She wrapped her scarf tighter, like she’d wrapped him the night before, in the field with the moon, under the moon, the moon rising above branches, softness underfoot releasing its earthy smells, his pleasing and slightly sweaty fragrance rising with his heat.

She watched him run past her on the empty beach, as he’d planned, now heading south into the wind. A growing wind, obscured landscape, air heavy with salt and moisture. The cadence of bare feet falling on sand, rhythmic like a metronome as he shrank smaller and smaller into the the distance. She didn’t care that temperatures were falling, that the sun had disappeared. She’d come all this way to feel cold, to listen to crashing waves. She’d come all this way to feel.

Again, the man came north, running through waves shallow upon the shore. He was a man built to move; move on a bike, up hills, move through water, down rivers, and move into her.

Her mind wandered again to the night before, to the field behind his house where a tractor stood waiting for morning workers. She’d leaned up again a solid tire, felt the immense treads beneath her ass, leaned back and breathed in the moon, the night, the soils and sounds. Threw her head back to look at the vastness of stars.

He’d moved in against her, pressing her hips into the tire. “The moon is watching me,” she thought, pushed up against the massive tire of a yellow Caterpillar backhoe, a machine waiting to plant a new almond orchard in straight rows north to south. “Why is this so exciting?” Up against the tractor, earth caked into treads, his face pressed into her breasts. Her hand dug into dirt behind her – the tire – while the other pulled the hair on the back of his head. A moan escaped her lips, almost as deep and guttural as the tractor’s motor on ignition.

The man ran by again, in the waves, watching the sea. “It’s winter,” she thought. “Who is this crazy man running back and forth because it makes him happy?” Who is this crazy guy coming back to me, now totally wet and shirtless and shivering?

This coast, this part of California, a fragile part that she’d been coming to for 50 years, a coast of exposed cliffs, barren beaches, wind swept highlands of cattle and scrubby land. This coast of high surf. “Is this why I’ve always loved this place, that I knew someday that I’d bring this man here?”

“Loins,” she suddenly thought. It’s not a word that she used often, except recently, when she could barely prevent her attention from drifting to her loins, or his. She couldn’t remember ever having felt like this, an arousal in her loins that seemed to last for hours, to recede and then return. It was a hot, almost burning sensation, the female equivalent of a teenaged boy’s perennial erection perhaps, sometimes welcome, sometimes mortifying. Only she wasn’t embarrassed because no one could see. Even he couldn’t tell how much he aroused her. How could she tell him this? Words wouldn’t come, but she could take him to places with her, to her fantasies, her dreams, and out into the landscape she so far shared with no one. She could wrap her legs around him as snugly as he held her, more closely and passionately than she’d ever been held. She could feel hard thighs, grip the slightly soft padding around a lean waist, run her hands down over his perfectly shaped ass, hard yet soft and so round.

He said, “Roll over onto me,” so she did, lay with her full weight pressing him down, feeling his hardness against her stomach, between her legs, inside her and out. With her hands, she pulled his arms over his head and moved deeply into and onto him, feeling a tiny thrill of power, a tiny bit of momentary domination as if it was fun to trade those feelings so that in the end there was a balance. She asked him if she wasn’t too heavy and he murmured no, and buried his face and mouth between her breasts, breathing deeply as if he might suffocate.

And outside above the surf, birds on wind, lifting and floating on thermals. Not gulls but crows. Immense, healthy very black crows celebrating a sunny day, their poetic dance climbing and diving, playing and sparring, a trio of crows advancing, retreating. Waves, curvy and sensual, twisting, rolling, undulating.

About the author: Daphne Devina is an essayist and artist with an irrepressible curiosity about life, adventure, and especially men. Join her as she explores a new world of irresponsibility after many years of juggling career, kids and marriage. Can she finally “have it all?” Can she reawaken passion in a body long dormant?

  • This is the third and last installment in a series written for Madison Lake Pages. Read here Part 1 and Part 3.

titillating short story

The next three Titillating Tuesday’s will be brought to you by my good friend and writing colleague, Daphne Divina.  It is a series of short personal stories about dating in her younger years and today.  Never divulge a person’s age but let’s just say she is in the prime of her prime.

I hope you enjoy this series.  As always, we love feedback.  Feel free to comment.


The Independent Woman – Part 1 by Daphne Divina

He came up from behind and said “Hello,” a first date with a man whose profile was articulate and provocative.  I turned toward the gentle face of a warm man, relieved that he looked exactly like his picture, only alive.  I swivelled off my bar stool and glanced at the empty seat beside me.

Moments before, another brunette woman had seated herself two stools down.  I thought, “Oh swell, he’ll come in and approach this younger version.”  But he didn’t.  Thinking that this woman was already well aware that these two middle-aged people were on an internet date, and convinced that she would eavesdrop on every single word – as I certainly would have – I suggested we move to a table.  I guess I already knew I wanted to find out what he was like and wanted to hear what he had to say.

My predictable bitchy screening process was already keeping score.  Tick off: warm, curious eyes, beautiful soft brown leather jacket that I already had an urge to touch, salt and pepper hair trimmed neat, cool blue textured dress shirt with cooler tie, dark khaki slacks, quiet demeanour, direct gaze, the look of a well dressed engineer just short of a geek.  Tallish – taller than I – and slim.  Oh no!  As a fit and curvaceous woman, I clearly outweighed him.

No non-starters.  Not yet.  Not so far.

No funny hats, no talking sports, football or basketball jerseys, or playing avid golf, no Republicanisms or any other isms, no poor grammar, no bullshit, no pretensions, macho or otherwise. 


Geologist, professor, paddler, potter, biker, runner, world traveler, man who’s worked at a desk, a salt mine and an oil field, man who likes women as humans, man with a penis, has fallen out of the sky and landed in my lap.


Large empty table next to me starts filling, first with a friend of mine, Ralph.  “Hello, Ralph,” I say, “This is Jerry.  We’re on a date!”  Laughing at myself because I can’t believe I just said that.  Ralph and Jerry exchange quick geology hither and yons, and Ralph joins his associates.  Later, Ralph comes back and asks, “So how’s the date going?”  It was adorable.  Ralph crouches down to chat, and in that brief exchange I realize that this guy Jerry and I have a lot in common.

Except age.  Which sure as hell doesn’t matter to me and it doesn’t seem to matter to him.  He likes smart, accomplished women, been married to a doc and then a psychologist.  Been around many women – must know what they like by now – what works and what doesn’t.  Later he tells me that at 18, he’d run off with a married woman of 28 for some kind of adventure.  I laugh and confess, “Well we have that in common; when I was 30 I had a fling with an 18 year old.  What a coincidence.”

In fact, my fling was a same-time-next-year kind of fling.  Those pheromones that attract – like bears to honey.  I’m confessing. The boy was barely legal and I couldn’t keep my hands off him.  I could smell him from 10 feet away.  Not that he smelled.  Nobody else could smell him but I could.  I almost still can.  I went to his wedding, and when we hugged, his hands slid down to my ass.  Good lord, I hope nobody saw, but they’re still married, and he’s the same age as Jerry today.

Surely legal by now.

Lunch over, we stood on the sidewalk, he to walk west, me east.  I looked at his sensual leather jacket and wanted to run my hands over his shoulders and down his biceped sleeves.  Awkward but good.  I wanted to hug goodbye but didn’t.  He didn’t.  I shook his hand, strong hand, surprisingly soft hand.  I didn’t bolt, I didn’t run.  It felt easy.

I felt pursued and that felt great.  I had to take a long look at myself, my need not to control others, but to be in control of me.  I’d always been the pursuer.  When separated years ago, my few relationships were casual, non-committal, sexual, shallow.  Perhaps it was that I hadn’t found anyone more consistent than my husband who was at least reliable.  Reliable but unimaginative, I used to say.

Perhaps I became an adult on the cusp of feminism, whatever that was, born with an independent streak, hitting a professional world where women had to fight for position, for power.  I had that personality.  It wasn’t compatible with a spouse who’d grown up in a traditional home with a subservient mom.  Perhaps, after a long marriage, I had become conditioned to defend my autonomy.

Well, at my age and experience, I can relax.  No need to prove myself, I’m realizing.  No power needed.

My male friend, Fred, came over to visit shortly after I’d had my third date with Jerry, a party where the host had said to us, “Well, if you have too much to drink, you can always stay in the Princess room.”  “Oh no,” I said, “We’re not sleeping together yet.”  Only slightly mortified at myself and my outspoken response.  Everyone laughed, including Jerry.

Fred told me that after his divorce, he’d bought a self-help book: How to Date Independent Women.  In the book, independent women were analogous to cats.  They like to snuggle and come close, but then have to leave.  They come and go, return and go, off to have alone time and do their own independent cat thing.  I thought about the dog I’d once had who couldn’t be alone, had to follow me everywhere.  Needy creature, part of my pack.

I’m a cat, I realize.  This is a major epiphany for me.  A cat.  I get it now.

So I told this to Jerry, as he came into my kitchen and backed me up against the counter, about the theory of the cat. He murmured with his lips nestled tightly against my neck, that he has two cats. He said that if I’m a cat, he’s my catnip.

Works for me.

Remember when you were a kid and you kissed a boy so hard and long that you got whisker burns? Well, that is if you liked kissing boys. Which I did. I liked kissing them and still remember briefly kissing a black kid who was in our choir. He had full lips, the softest most wonderful lips I’d ever experienced.

I remember kissing boys and how great it was, and then with marriage, no more kissing. Not that kind of soft lingering endlessly erotic kissing.

I remember the feel of my high school boyfriend’s thigh, his strong lean muscles beneath tight jeans, my hand on his leg next to mine, the Levi texture of the fabric. Jerry wears jeans. Oil field jeans by Wrangler with built-in fire retardant that make the fabric heavier, slower to burn. His pockets are frayed with years of use.

Hot. I link my fingers through his loops and pull him close.

This morning, as I write my way into my feelings, I touch my chin and feel the abrasion whiskers have made against my skin. Surprised and more than a little awed that I can feel like this, like that 30 year old felt. Irresistibly drawn. That I can’t resist, don’t want to resist. Awed that I don’t feel like bolting, that I can stay or go and return, that it’s all so remarkably easy. It’s not a question of recovering my youth. I’m perfectly happy to be my age, shirking the last vestiges of having to prove myself in some annoying, indefinable way, that even with the brief encounters I’ve had, I had to be the one to leave first.

See? See how independent I am? I’m going to leave first. I’m casual. See?

I remember a brief encounter at a lake resort years ago on a “mommy’s weekend” that got just short of out-of-control. Four women at an oyster bar, two men with NBC News. Cameramen. Ending up with the blond, shorter than I thought as he got off the stool, to follow us to a dance place down the street. Crazy bar, dirty dancing, fight in the bar (had never seen a bar fight), out on their boat making the wise decision not to take the boat out. Ending up on the stern wrapped in the guy’s arms, gentle waves licking the side of the boat, kissing him endlessly. Wanting him endlessly. In front of my friends. What the hell? Coming to our senses at about 3 in the morning. Meeting the two NBC guys for breakfast, hot summer sun burning, meeting the blond once more. Good thing a war started and he was sent off to film it.

And I feel like I should leave this essay now. End it in some clever way. Bolt off knowing I’m in control of me. But I’m going to stay a little longer.

It’s raining outside. The heat is on, my feet are cold, I’m hungry. It’s 9:19 a.m. on a cold, dismal day, but the rain is welcome. I welcome surprises, amazements, smells and tastes and textures, the vista around the corner or over the mountain, down the stream and into the lakes.

I always have, but now more than ever.

About the author: Daphne Devina is an essayist and artist with an irrepressible curiosity about life, adventure, and especially men. Join her as she explores a new world of irresponsibility after many years of juggling career, kids and marriage. Can she finally “have it all?” Can she reawaken passion in a body long dormant?

  • This is the third and last installment in a series written for Madison Lake Pages. Read here Part 2 and Part 3.