While on his first return trip to Dublin from Zurich in 1909, James Joyce wrote a series of quite pornographic letters to his long-time girlfriend (and future wife) Nora Barnacle. In the words of Nora herself, "I don't know whether my husband is a genius or not, but he certainly has a dirty mind." The letters are reported to have graphic descriptions of each touch, thrust, scent, and look of their most memorable sexual encounters. They're said to be truly brilliant erotica, penned eloquently but without the literary complexity found in Ulysses or Finnegan's Wake.

Ironically, Joyce's heirs have dissalowed the reprinting of these letters in any form, much as the publication of Ulysses was banned until 1933. So for now, everything2 will just have to do without, despite its resounding need for well written erotica. The only US printing allowed was in the out-of-print collection Selected Letters of James Joyce, edited by Richard Ellman and published in 1975 by Viking. There is a UK paperback version of this collection, published by Faber & Faber and available for expensive import with ISBN 0571107346.

Included here in the name of Fair Use is a single sentence from one of the letters, reprinted from Richard Zacks' excellent book An Underground Education:

My love for you allows me to pray to the
spirit of eternal beauty and tenderness
mirrored in your eyes or to fling you down
under me on that soft belly of yours and fuck
you up behind, like a hog riding a sow,
glorying in the very stink and sweat that rises
from your arse, glorying in the open shame
of your upturned dress and white girlish
drawers and in the confusion of your
flushed cheeks and tangled hair.