The American Journal of Poetry
"Strong Rx Medicine"®


Nin Andrews

An Abstinent Orgasm


The orgasm likes to try people on for size.  She has her favorites: the flame-swallower who inhales her in a single gasp. The long-legged girl dressed in a wedding veil. The waiter in a dark restaurant who asks what she wants—he is only there to serve.  But tonight she is ordering only a glass of water.  She is trying out abstinence, the second ingredient of an angelic orgasm, something she read about in a holy book.  The third: cover your hair with a hat or scarf—keep each curl and wisp contained. Outside the street is empty.  Snow is beginning to fall.  It’s so cold she feels like a nude nun, walking inside an ice cube.



Nin Andrews

The Orgasm Bitches about What People Think of Her


They think I am just a matter of rubbing two sticks together.

They think a fire simply catches, then burns.

They think I cannot last forever.

They think they can regret me, but that I won’t regret them.

They think it is I who makes them sad.

They think it is I who makes them lonely.

They think that one day they will not need me.

They think it is I who takes the meaning from their lives and makes it something small and wet.




NIN ANDREWS' next collection, The Last Orgasm, is forthcoming from Etruscan Press.


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