Another Look at Pornography
There’s nothing more debauched than thinking.
—Wisława Szymborska, “An Opinion on the Question of Pornography”
Reading the Polish Nobel Laureate’s opinion
on the question of pornography, a question
that much obsesses me, I was disappointed
by its sidestep into the airy realm of thought,
as if viewing smut has no traffic with thinking.
Wandering round a Chelsea flea market today,
I chanced upon a box of yellowed porno mags.
In one called Don, dated 1974, fully pictured
with twenty-something boys doing the nasty,
was a report on “Homosexualität in Singapur.”
Not knowing German, I could only make out
two names, New Nation and old Bugis Street.
What would the Nobel Laureate make of that
happy coincidence of knowledge, home and sex?
Or my refusal to pay $20 for that piece of luck?