Pleasure, The Public and Propriety
Words & Images © Raymond Navarro.
I lay on a flat cool bed of rock shaded from glaring sunlight. I was in the bliss of forgetting everything but my current surroundings: lush trees, birds rustling on fallen leaves, the smell of warmed wood and stirred flowers. My book slipped out of my hand and I didn’t know how long I’d drifted off. When I looked up and around, he stood there with wet of his eyes shining in my direction. He stepped further into the bush of tiered trees rising up on slants of land laid around stone. I knew to come to him. I didn’t know him. The last time I saw him he was running away. I was being handcuffed. I had little to say.
Individuals have made themselves private pockets in public spaces in the hopes of having an intimate encounter with another for an immeasurable amount of time. These spaces were secret to some, sacred to the others. Man met with his animal desire in lots of land once free from society’s constructs of propriety and morality. A sense of wild rests in these margins and perhaps to invoke it out of visitors.
“Cruising spots” are a landscape of sexual culture around the world. In New York, you can find them from forests to beaches–on the fringes of the grid. Political posts of love and sex versus law and morality intertwined with the branches of green ash, stained with the juice of a juneberry.
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YPA 2016 MENTORING PROGRAM: AMERICAN LANDSCAPES
TEAM NEW YORK
MENTOR: Frank Meo
MENTEE: Raymond Navarro