Slut Machine – Shane Allison (QueerMojo Press)

Buy it now direct from Rebel Satori Press or from our Amazon.com store – Slut Machine
In these days of politically correct, non-subversive, bad-for-the-queer-movement sex negativity, it’s incredibly refreshing to see someone celebrate the sluttiness queer life has to offer despite all those wholesome images HRC displays to make us seem “just like everyone else.” Poet Shane Allison will never be one of their poster boys, and his book of poetry, Slut Machine, will not be finding its way to their shelves. And that’s a good—no, a great—thing. 
The titles alone tell much of the story: “Ass,” “I Want to Fuck a Redneck,” “In the Event of My Dildo’s Demise,” “Pretty Pink Pricks,” “If You Find Me Dead in a Bathhouse,” “I Want to Eat Chinese Food Off Your Ass,” and “My Fuckbuddy Has a Girlfriend” are all they represent themselves to be in glorious, expletive-ridden detail that rings of a vulgar freedom few mainstream writers can take advantage of. 
Allison uses this freedom to expose all aspects of his sexuality with powerful, unashamed lyricism, from his beginnings (“Becoming a Man in the Ladies Department of J. Byron’s” and “Teenage Drag Queen”) to his current crushes (“Jarrett”). But vulgarity is not all Allison has to offer us here. He always has a purpose; a method behind his metaphors, and while much of what’s here is about sex, the book never gets boring. 
Allison is savvy enough to change up his meter, his rhythms and his subjects so that he never comes across as a one-trick-pony. He uses pop culture as his touchstone (“George Costanza Doesn’t Love Me”) and his family as a referential base (“Kin Folks”, “Why Can’t My Parents Be Hollywood Movie Stars?,” “When I Move Out of My Parents’ House”), but he always comes back to sex and its trappings as a vehicle to display his tough exterior as well as his soft chocolate center. 
But nowhere does Allison put it more succinctly or precisely than in the title poem, “Slut Machine”:
Why I’m such a slut?
Because I don’t bother to ask their names afterwards. 
Because frankly, I don’t give a damn.
Because I go down without interrogating them on their sexual history.
Because it feels better raw and unprotected …
Because with every chest I have caressed, 
        With every dick I have touched
        With every set of lips
        With every man that has whipped it out, stuck it in, shot a load, 
                zipped up and gotten out, 
I have looked for the love of my life in the faces of them all. 
Preach it, sistah. Amen, and fuck you HRC.   
Reviewed by Jerry Wheeler
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