A SWer in Seattle is putting together an art project entitled, “Love Letters to Sex Workers.” (Look for it at SEAF!!) A desk and chair are set up in front of a large wooden framed board. Inside the desk drawers are pads of paper and pens from various hotels. The backboard is covered in plain, white envelopes. The provider saved these envelopes from appointment after appointment in which gents would invariably leave their donations for her in plain, white envelopes. After many months, she had a veritable forest of envelopes which she pinned to the board. The project consists of inviting people to sit at the desk and write actual letters to sex workers and leave them in the envelopes. One gentleman wrote such an amazing letter, I asked him if I post it here and he, graciously, said yes.
A Love Letter to the Sex Workers of America:
I have recently made a particular point of expressing heartfelt thanks to each sex worker I meet, not just for the wonderful gifts she/he/they bring to any given moment, but also simply for being a sex worker. I think that is something we should all do on a regular basis, as individual clients and admirers, and, even more importantly in these troubling times, as a society. To be a sex worker in America right now is to make a statement! So: Thank your local sex worker! After all, what other group of people do so much good work, create so much positive energy, and take so much shit for it?
In composing this love letter I am attempting, in my own poor way, to give a bit of guidance to others who may be at a loss to put into words their own boundless love and admiration for our marvelous SW community. My goal is to create a series of verses, a sort of epic poem, from which the occasional nugget of wisdom might be plucked and recited to one’s favorite provider. Or, alternatively, a whole stanza could be chanted over and over again, either individually or in a group, as a sort of soul-stirring mantra. After all, our Redeemer has the Lord’s Prayer; why shouldn’t sex workers be worshipped through their own divine formula, their own special prayer—a verbal offering of thankfulness for the grace and redemption they provide to us?
So here goes:
BEST BELOVED, LET US RISE AND GIVE PROFOUND THANKS TO OUR SACRED SEX WORKERS!
THANK YOU, O DIVINE WARRIORS, for taking a bold stance on the front lines of resistance against the stupidification of our society;
THANK YOU, O REBELLIOUS HEARTS, for engaging in daily acts of transgression against the soul-numbing strictures of paternalistic and authoritarian institutions;
THANK YOU, O DAZZLING BEAMS OF LIGHT, for your patient efforts in prying open closed minds and introducing the truly novel concepts of truth, logic, and critical thinking;
THANK YOU, O COURAGEOUS SOULS, for risking social stigma, family discord, threats to future job prospects and personal liberty, and much, much more, to practice your ancient and honorable craft;
THANK YOU, O SUPER-EROTIC MUSES, who help us shatter the bourgeois norms, thereby freeing our minds, bodies, and spirits to soar like eagles;
THANK YOU, O WISE TEACHERS, for showing us that respect and consent are sexy, and that beauty is something that emanates from within all of us;
THANK YOU, O LUMINOUS BEINGS, for demonstrating that strong women (as well as strong trans, gender-fluid and non-binary folks) are to be revered and celebrated, not feared or hated;
THANK YOU, O BRAZEN WITCHES, SEDUCTIVE SHAMANS, AND DEVILISH DOMMES, for reminding us in such a wickedly delightful way that the conventions society teaches us ain’t necessarily so, and that “deviancy” is normal;
THANK YOU, O SULTRY SHAPE-SHIFTERS, for embodying a million fantasies come to life;
THANK YOU, O CELESTIAL YOGA INSTRUCTORS, for revealing to us the sinuous poetry of the body and for providing us with a most delicious “workout”;
THANK YOU, O COMPANIONS IN RHYTHMIC ADVENTURE, for taking us on journeys that leave no instrument in our personal orchestra unplayed—no horn unblown, no drum unbeaten;
THANK YOU, O GREAT PHILOSOPHERS, for showing us that sex is both much more important and much less important than our repressed and hung-up society would have it;
THANK YOU, O WILD CHILDREN OF THE PRIMEVAL FOREST, for guiding us back to the Garden and helping us re-discover the potential for passion and physical pleasure that exists within all humans;
THANK YOU, O GENTLE HEALERS, for practicing your craft with kindness and good humor, for offering respect, comfort, and a respite from shame to all you seek you out, and for creating at least as much sacred and positive energy day as any other single profession;
(LET US PAUSE TO PRAY THAT THE WORLD WILL ONE DAY UNDERSTAND THE BREADTH AND SCOPE OF THE SOCIETAL PATHOLOGIES YOUR SACRED ENERGY COULD PREVENT, IF ONLY GIVEN THE CHANCE!)
THANK YOU, O TOLERANT COURTESANS, for enduring the scorn and persecution of a mainstream society that—as the Jesus of the New Testament understood far better than the modern-day scoundrels and hypocrites who don his mantle—obstinately chooses to stand the truth on its head when it comes to your life force, motivation, integrity, wisdom, and incalculable contributions to the community;
THANK YOU, O GORGEOUS GATHERERS OF GREEN, for giving us something truly worthwhile on which to squander our ill-gotten gains;
THANK YOU, O UNYIELDING ACTIVISTS, for fiercely protecting each person’s right to do whatever he/she/they damn well please with his/her/their own body;
THANK YOU, O DEFIANT ONES, for refusing to be silenced, for organizing together, and for challenging the powerful and the ignorant with your bold artistic visions and articulate voices;
THANK YOU, O BRAVE AND UNFETTERED SPIRITS, for daring to go places which others lack the courage to explore, and for doing so with your minds and spirits as much as with your bodies;
THANK YOU, O SEXY AVATARS OF THE FIERY EROTIC IMAGINATION, for making our world such a fun and worthwhile place in which to live!