Elizabeth Barrette (ysabetwordsmith) wrote,
Elizabeth Barrette
ysabetwordsmith

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Poem: "Warm Fuzzies"

This poem is spillover from the September 2, 2014 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] chanter_greenie. It also fills the "sensory deprivation" square in my 9-1-14 card for the [community profile] genprompt_bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] janetmiles. It belongs to the Schrodinger's Heroes project.

Content: This poem features bear culture, a branch of homosexuality that favors big hairy men (and occasionally smaller less-hairy men). Chris' cousin Art is a bear, which does not go over at all well in their redneck family. :( So Art winds up crashing at the Tef, and Quinn helps him feel at home with a lot of sensation play. All the fluffy fluffness, with two guys in bed with a box of toys. Consider your tastes before reading onward.


"Warm Fuzzies"


Chris had coaxed his cousin Art
into the living room after supper,
but Art was still hanging on the edges
of the group instead of settling in.

Also he was kind of huddling
in his bear afghan, even though
it wasn't cold in the room.

"Are you okay?" Quinn asked.

"It's just ... hard for me to unwind,"
Art said. "Family's been rough,
and I don't feel at home here yet."

Quinn sat down beside Art
and put a hand on his knee.

Art leaned toward him.

"Yeah, I thought you might be
touch-dominant," Quinn said.
"Bet you have lots of skin hunger, too.
So do you only go for bears, or
do you also like otters?"

Art gave him a faint hopeful look.
"I like otters," he said. "You like bears?"

"I like just about everything,"
Quinn said with a grin.
"I'm very flexible."

"Okay," Art said, leaning closer.

Quinn reached up to scratch his back,
the thick body hair tangible
even though the cloth.
"Come back to my room," he invited.
"I think I can make you feel better."

"I'd like that."
Art followed him eagerly.

"Strip down as far as you want,"
Quinn suggested, and Art
peeled off everything but his boxers.

Quinn got out the velvet sleep mask,
the leather cuffs padded with lambswool,
and his big box of sensory toys.
"Think you can hold still, or not?" he asked.

"I can hold still, but ..." Art trailed off,
one finger petting the soft wool.

"But you want the cuffs anyway,
no problem," Quinn said.
He fastened Art across the bed,
then said, "First time playing,
we use panic snaps on the cuffs.
Show me you can get out of those."

Art twisted around until he managed
to reach the release and pop it loose.
"I'm good," he declared.

"Okay," Quinn said as he reattached
the snaps to the chains. "This is just
light sensory play, so plain speech is fine.
Use the standard green-yellow-red
safewords if you need them. Agreed?"

"Yes," Art said, and he sounded
halfway gone already.

"And ... action," Quinn said happily,
slipping the velvet sleep mask
over Art's eyes to block the light.

Quinn started with a rabbit-fur glove,
stroking slowly over all the exposed skin
until the big man hummed in pleasure.

Then Quinn switched to a feather tickler,
reaching out to touch sensitive skin
at throat and inner elbows and toes.
Art's deep, booming chuckle filled the room.

With the mask on, Art had no way
of knowing what Quinn would do next,
which heightened the sensations.

Next came the spaghetti ball with
its thin rubber threads, a floppy noodle ball,
and a more complicated tentacle ball
with a smaller nubby ball at end of each arm.
These Quinn used to roll over Art's body,
creating a variety of delightful sensations.

Quinn used the rabbit-fur glove again,
sweeping it over Art's body before
changing to a different type of toy.

There were solid balls, too, each of them
with a different texture -- round bumps,
sharper points, ridges, grooves, craters,
even one with big peg legs -- which
could be used for deep pressure.

Quinn enjoyed both the physical sensations
and the thrill of making Art happy.

Art was very happy.
All the tension had melted away,
leaving him a limp blob of bear
humming quietly in Quinn's bed.

Quinn ended the session with
a curry glove that had nubs on one side
and little rolling massage balls on the other.
He made sure that Art's respectable pelt
was all smoothed down properly.

He put the sensory toys back in their box, then
undid the cuffs and peeled off the sleep mask.
"Do you need anything in the way of aftercare?"
Quinn asked Art, sitting down beside him.

Art gave him a lazy blink, slowly
readjusting to the dim light. "Nah."

"Would you prefer to go back
to your guest room, or stay here?"
Quinn asked.

"Stay," Art murmured. "C'mere."
One thick arm curled around Quinn,
drawing him against the warm bulk.

Quinn was perfectly content with that.
He dragged a blanket over them both,
snuggled into his larger-than-life-size teddy bear,
and went to sleep.

* * *

Notes:

Bear culture has a flag of its own, and that's what Art's afghan looks like. The brotherhood of bears has some complex community dynamics.

Skin hunger comes from the human need for healthy touch, and people vary in how much of it they have. Touch-dominant people like Art tend to have high needs.

Bondage and restraints offer opportunities for fun play, as long as you follow the safety guidelines. One good rule is that nobody gets tied TO anything during the first play session. In this case, the session is less recreation and more emotional first aid. So Quinn comes up with an alternative safety method: panic snaps that let Art get out of bondage instantly if he needs to. Quinn is so skilled that he can quickly parse a new partner's needs and find a safe way to meet them.

Sensation play is another terrific activity that you can try. There are lots of toys to consider. Fur gloves and feather ticklers are classics. Sensory University and Office Playground are two great sources for sensory toys. There are soft spaghetti balls, noodle balls, and tentacle balls. Texture balls are solid. This is the double-sided curry and ball glove.
Tags: cyberfunded creativity, fishbowl, gender studies, poem, poetry, reading, weblit, writing
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