kissing (again, but not so long winded)

So tell me, what kind of reactions do you get to this?

Holding her slick neck in one hand, he kissed her as if licking a honey jar clean while the hot water hammered their necks and put a flush on their skin… ((LaVyrle Spencer, Homesong))

Does the imagery work? I’m not going to say anything at this point, because I’m very curious about how this works for you all.

 

17 Replies to “kissing (again, but not so long winded)”

  1. I get the idea, but I’m not a fan of metaphors when it comes to kissing and/or sex scenes. Although this one is not too bad. It doesn’t turn me off, which is good.

  2. My first thought was that he was kissing her neck – all those references to necks! And then I cringed thinking I would hate to be kissed by him – it’s as if he lacks finesse… so I probably wouldn’t want the writer to go into any more detail…

  3. It’s an odd mixture of images, and too much to process in one sentence. Holding her slick neck… as if she were a gourd he could hold in his hand? And then “licking a honey jar clean while the hot water hammered their necks” tries to have it both ways. Licking her while hot water hammered her, or licking a honey jar while hot water hammered it? When it takes until the end of the sentence to untangle it, something’s wrong. Sometimes you have to choose just one image.

  4. How can he hold her neck IN one hand. WITH, maybe, but not IN – is it separated from her body? How can hot water hammer on both their necks? Must be a really wide spray of water.

    Sooo. I can’t get past the poorly worded sentences to decide if this imagery works.

    Only image that springs to mind is that he maybe is Winnie the Pooh.

  5. I’m not crazy about that kind of imagery. I much prefer reading sexy passages which just come out and say exactly what’s going on (although some imagery is okay — not knocking it entirely). Awhile back, I read a book by a prolific and popular writer and, afterward, I pretty much decided I wouldn’t read another of her novels because of passages similar (but even worse!) than the one supplied.

  6. Yech. No, this does not work. The ‘slick neck’ part is just gross–makes me think of a snake for some reason. And the honey jar is not a good image. It’s like he’s going all out with his tongue to get in every little corner, which to me sounds like a really sloppy kisser. In fact, it reminds me of my first French kiss at 13 (?), which grossed me out so much that I literally went and rinsed my mouth out afterwards.

  7. That seems like an extremely uncomfortable and unpleasant kiss to me. I don’t think that guy knows what he’s doing. . .

  8. There were so many words I didn’t like; i.e.slick and the whole “licking a honey jar clean” and well I could go on. So the imagery for me was not a pleasant one. Whomever the dude is he’s now got a bad reputation! :-)

  9. Yuck!! Come on, this simile does nothing but gross me out! While I understand WHAT the author is trying to say, I don’t like HOW she says it…for some reason, the image of a person licking their fingers after eating barbecue comes to mind…sorry.

  10. OTOH, if we had the entire scene, I might feel differently. I know the Lawrence scene from your last post, so I recognize the feel of that quote and find it appropriate. The short quote above doesn’t work by itself, but in context I’m willing to believe it could come across better.

  11. First of all, taken just as it is, the slick neck immediately made me think of a sweaty neck. Yuck. Though in context, I might realize this was a shower scene.

    Second, licking a honey jar clean is hard work requiring a strong tongue. Li-i-i-i-ick. It immediately made me think of a comedically bad kiss, such as you might see on Saturday Night Live or some other comedy sketch show. Not sexy.

    Hot water, flushed skin, OK. But the lick does me in, no matter how sexy honey might be in other contexts.

  12. There is a scene in a Three Stooges short in which a black bear leans in a cabin window and licks a clear jar of honey (about the size of a water glass) almost clean. There’s a kind of gross-out fascination to the shot because the bear’s tongue reaches all the way to the bottom of the jar.

    And now I’ve read this passage, the combined squick factor of memory and imagination is unbearable.

    Besides that, “their necks” and “their skin” sounds oddly wrong — one is clearly plural, the other …? do they share the same skin? Could have been phrased another way.

    On a technical note, the graph-paper background of the quote makes it really hard to read. Making the font bold would help.

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