The Ecstatic Writings of Linda Mary Montano: Stories Written During 7 Years of Living Art
Thanks for reading this because it explains why I feel conflicted about including 20 stories written in both the middle of the AIDS epidemic and in the heat of "opening" my 7 chakras! Three friends said, "Put the stories in, put them in," but now that I'm 75 years old and back in the Catholic Church I'm catapulted into a dilemma. Yes, some are somewhat readable, some intimate but most, in retrospect, are not as Tantric as I would like. In fact some are embarrassingly bad soft porn. The entry below might explain why sex and I are such complicated friends and why some of the stories reveal my wavering allegiance to intimacy.
I was raised in a small town, a strict Roman Catholic. Because of choice and fate, I became the nun’s favorite at school, made the nine first Fridays at least 70 times (it entailed going to Mass on the first Friday of each month and insured that I would bypass hell), and tried never to sin by thought, word or deed against the sixth commandment - chastity. To put it simply, I was good and sex was bad.
At 16 my world collapsed when I was even more sexually confused. To escape further into ‘purity’ and away from shame, I entered a convent at 19 and stayed there for two years, basking in celibacy, although at the end I was beginning to form loving but non-sexual crushes on other nuns. The convent life was utopian: time was devoted to silence (we talked only one hour a day), study of scriptures and singing in an echo-chambered chapel with 150 other nuns while wearing a nuns habit right out of the Middle Ages. But I left anorexic and went from 145 to 80 pounds, unable to adjust to that great calling. Causes for my discomfort got stuffed, and I married, divorced and lived marginal lifestyles for years, trying to make peace with the mystery of sex.
Eventually I taught myself a sexual healing diversion tactic which goes like this; when the sexual desire or shame became greater than my ability to handle it, I wrote instead. These stories are the result. Writing began to function as the safe-sex-no-AIDS other, as the lover. And it functioned, practically - as a vacuum cleaner, because they (a few felt somewhat divinely channeled) sucked out fantasies and memories lodged in a cave inside me. When the memories came out as stories and were transformed into art, they stopped being labeled and judged as bad or shameful because of the alchemy of the creative process! Art healed my shame.
After years of writing memories, fantasies and wishes, I felt empty; the ‘housecleaning’ provided a relief and great interior space. Sex and I were now best friends and I won the added bonus of being able to be my own priest, forgiving myself, legislating my own sexual morality.
This book is now yours. Use it like a workbook. After reading Annie Sprinkle’s magical ability to introduce me with an insight born of years of sexual wisdom, enjoy the stories and then follow the recipe at the end of each story and although not every one will stir you poetically, if one does, use the sensation of catharsis to travel into your own treasure chest of sexual fantasy and feeling. Why? So that you can then travel out again into the brilliance of soundless sound and lightless light which are metaphoric terms for the Ecstasy of Nothingness. Words can be fuel to ignite and stir the magnificent energy that we all are.
Hurrah for LIFE!
Linda Mary, 2017