Updated: Oct 8, 2019
I remember her saying, “take your right leg and place it between your hands – hold that position. Now take your right arm and lift it to the sky, twisting your body upward opening up your chest. You should begin to feel your hips open – hold it, hold it – use your breath,” Her mantra for each pose was, “use your breath.” Even now, I can hear the class complaining about the discomfort to which the instructor would add almost as if it were timed, “Breathe into your pain.” She’d continue saying, “as you breathe, you should feel that your mind is being lifted away.” There was this silence as the class adjusted to these claims but desperate for relief there was hope that she was right. “As we breathe,” her voice would say. “As we breathe,” she repeated. “As we breathe,” she spoke aloud with urgent repetition. The room was filled with sounds of the class breathing that were not soothing at all. The loud constant breathing did which permeate the room with relaxing lies for most, however, but for some, it gave credence to her claims that breathing is the key.
I recall shaking my head as the class clown that I was, we were near the end of the session and as we lay there pretending that our bodies didn’t ache from prolonged stretches and positions, angles if you will, being held much too long, we’d lay there silent drifting into oblivion. She would speak, “close your eyes, relax, imagine that you were everything that you’d want to be. Breathe in, hold it, breathe out, pause, breathe, breathe", as she blows outward, speaking those words "just breathe,” once more as if to drive the point home.
It was this almost sexual discomfort and giddy emotion that brought about this staple piece. Walk with me, can you see where this is going? We’re laying there after giving our lives to repeated positions and being told to breathe. Maybe it’s just me but am I the only one who's in this space right now? My blood was pumping through my veins like the Hulk shifting into the beast. I could feel the pulse beating inside of me as I lay there wearisome trying to focus on the class. Pause, right there and think through this really quick. “Legs next to your head as we revolve leaving nothing unsaid, I’m feeding you all of me as you gasp for air, winded as we go there ...” Can you hear your breaths aloud or picture this pose? I urge you to close your eyes and tell me that isn’t an ordinary course of action at this moment. My imagination was running wild as though I was someplace else, breathing into joy and pain, intimacy, and seduction.
Here was the beginning of my poetry, which I could feel each heart beat inflating my earth. Let me be clear, this is about Just Breathe, and it’s inception, so let me take a minute and set the mood for this procedure. The room is dark with the essence of Rose Hip oil perfuming the enclosed space. As we lay there relaxing on our mats being sung to sleep by the innocence of a continual voice strumming. She says, “relax, breathe, let your mind be at ease. Allow the world to lift away as you take flight”. Hmm, this is what my mind says to me when I hear that, “Silhouettes of you spinning through my head, thoughts of your body planted in the center of this bed, legs next to your head.” I mean how far astray must we roam from complete and utter pleasure as we are being led past pain into it? I’m doing what she’s saying; I’m breathing; the only difference is where my mind is taking me isn’t the same place that everyone else’s mind is going. Nonetheless, I’m breathing being transported somewhere away from where I am, and that is kind of the point of the pose, right?
As many of you know by now, my writing comes from concepts and concepts come from reality. The Other Side of Love is about reality because relationships are about reality, and based on truth, one should hope. In relationships, there is a vast array of indifference, just like there is a vast array of togetherness and love. I wanted to touch on each aspect with the book but didn’t want to leave out the sexual exercises of affection itself. The book doesn’t highlight either one mood more than the other, but it does, in my opinion, touch on elements that are usually not spoken of as often. So lay back and let’s get back to Just Breathe.
The concept of Just Breathe came from this yoga class as we were taught to use our breath as a tool for release. That got me thinking about how we breathe because in yoga, how we breathe is just as important as in the finer arts of lovemaking. Let’s take a moment to consider this point briefly. How do you breathe as you begin your climb to a beautiful climax? What does your breath sound like? How many breaths per every 10 seconds do you take? You should really consider this. Is it fast or slow as the clock ticks and the rhythm of that faithful in and out or circular motion builds? How is it when we allow our bodies to relax and sink into pleasureful pain and sacrifice? The tense knuckle curling, back bending, ab tightening draw of climax is the opposite of the fluid motion of our breath though it is our breath that leads to this beautiful flow of majesty. Are you flowing with me on this?
“I rub your hip, touch your leg and grip your thigh but why am I building so quickly!” This may sound like premature ejaculation, but there’s so much more going on here. The next line says, “It’s like we’re orgasming mutually like this flow was meant to be – we just breathe.”
Can you tell me what is going on here? There’s so much more than what you read so that may require some thought. Let me ask; have you ever orgasmed at the same time as your partner? Be honest? Let’s pretend as though you have – how amazing is that as you both cry out in a wet embrace achieving the crowning glory of intimacy together? It is pleasure without pain. It is the beauty of sacrifice, and neither went away in want, but the bond of moving together and reaching this climax in harmony is still much more than the singular orgasm though this is not the end of the story.
In this piece, there is so much back and forth, though I was unable to really capture who says what so it is one continuous flow with the female perspective sprinkled in like salt and pepper. I wanted to have more parts spoken from the female point of view though my budget was nothing; therefore, most are spoken from a male’s perspective which still fits since this is his way of achieving his goal while taking her to a place of complete ecstasy.
While the concept is easy to explain, I’ll go through the initial introduction anyway. This is where you should really close your eyes and shut your mind down to get the full display of what is about to happen.
The piece is set on a weeknight. She is a tad late getting home from a hectic day, so he figures that he will make her night by pampering her in a way that suggests his affection. He has the bath water ready; it’s hot and fragrant. It has been spiked with essential oils and salt to ease her tension. There are rose petals and bubble bath forming peaks in the water. He plans to bathe her while feeding her cherries with chocolate which he’s placed on the tub surface already. There’s a real problem though because the music is nice and low, which sets the atmosphere in a way that suggests more than a bath. She’s relaxed as he undresses her. He begins up top whipping off her shirt, then her braw exposing beautiful handfuls of precious dewdrops. She breathes, exhaling as he touches her. His voice stammers as he is trying to be steadfast about his business.
Damn, he can’t help himself as he grows through his clothing, and it’s evident. She relaxes more into the moment as he finishes his task of undressing her. Finally, the journey is wearing him down as he begins to give in. He pulls a page from SWV’s playbook as she stands there while he goes Downtown while facing uptown. She stands there naked in front of this tub filled with everything that she likes but the playbook that he’s using is too convincing. She melts to the floor, and even now, I can almost hear Brian McKnight's “The Floor” playing in my head. “This act of me tasting you” are his efforts as she pulls his head, arching her back, squeezing it as though she was entering into a deliciously HARD orgasm. Her hands form fists, as she tightens her grip, she's biting her lip. Now let’s put “I rub your hip, touch your leg and grip your thigh” this into context. I’m sure this makes more sense now. The “building so quickly” are her words just before her building explodes. They are still on the floor next to the untouched tub filled with water and fragrances, which dost the scent of sex in the room.
He lifts her weak body to the bed, releasing a sexual assault that she will never forget. “My head and this bed begins to spin again,” are her words. She’s holding her breath as she climaxes, again and again, he’s leaving her body orgasmically depleted while she gasps for air. He says, “I’m not the cook, but I’m damn sure feeding you” because it’s not over. He has been waiting for this night all day, and there is no way that she’s had quite enough, not until she falls asleep from pure exhaustion will he be done.
Okay, this is the internet, so I’ll stop there…
Throughout the piece, you can hear words being repeated, “Right there, right there, right there.” The constant panting drives home that this piece is all about pleasure. She says, “right there” because she knows what is coming, he says, “right there” for the same reason but in most cases, he knows when she will reach her peak. These are voices reliving the satisfaction of repeated orgasms like whatchamacallits and wind-mills on a southwestern plateau. Funny enough, “I taste you, ingesting you like sinkholes do,” was a lyric that came to this piece last as it replaced the original which was quite offensive, as I’ve been told. Still, it delivers the point of what this piece is about.
Like Yoga, why else put so much effort into breathing other than living but being alive isn’t the same as living? If you’ve experienced situations like Just Breathe, then you’ve lived a little, whereas, if you haven’t given it time you’ll hopefully find your deliverance as well. How we breathe, when we breathe, and how fast we breathe coincides with the flow of simultaneous urges leading up to a release. “I’m seeing you, life-like rivers flowing into you, pardon me as I flow back into you.” Damn, is this really about babies being made you ask? Yes, it is unless you have had the nip that is. There are many references throughout the book that suggest this. Life-like rivers flowing into you can only be one thing when it comes to Just Breathe so stay focused because we’re almost done.
As we lay there at the end of class, I hear a voice whispering as a slow light creating shadows on the walls. I’m groggy, wondering why the class is over, still living in the moment of complete seduction. My eyes partially opened but crusted over seeing images floating by. I’m no longer in class but instead in my bedroom. The voice says, “Rollover to one side, lifting yourself with the opposite hand.” I’m still there laying down as though I hear nothing because why would I want to come out of this trance? It’s quite fun in there, and I enjoy it. My name is called from across the room, and I realize that it’s over and wherever I was is not where I am in this moment. “Breathe,” she says, “breathe in slowly finding your inner peace, breathe out, exhaling the impurities from your body.” Seriously, is she really speaking directly to me because I hear “It's like this flow was meant to be” and it shows?
My next thought as I realize that I am awake and breathing, is I don’t care what the class is doing, I only know what I’m about to do – let’s breathe...