“With Two Fingers”, An excerpt from ‘Dahlgren’, By Samuel Delany, Translated By Paola Di Tolla

With two fingers, he touched her cunt. She reached down to press his hand against her. He dropped his mouth; she spread her fingers, her hair pressed out between them.

The odor, like a blow against his face, brought back— was it from Oregon? —an ax blade’s first hack in some wet pine log. He thrust out his tongue.

And his cock dragged against the blanketing; the tenderer oval pushed forward in the loose hood.

She held his head, hard, with one hand; held his two fingers, hard against her hip, with her other.

He mapped the folds that fell, wetly, out, with his tongue; and the gristly nut in the folded vortex; and the soft, granular trough behind it. She moved, and held her breath for half a minute, gasped, held it again; gasped. He let himself rub against the blanket, just a little, the way he used to masturbate when he was nine. Then he crawled up onto her; both her hands, thrust between her thighs, caught his cock: he pushed into her. Her arms fought from beneath him, to lock, suddenly and tightly, on his neck. Holding her shoulders, he pushed, and retreated, and pushed again, slowly; pushed again. Her hips rolled under his. Her heels walked up the blanket, ankles against his thighs.


His chin, wet and unshaven, slipped against her throat. He remembered how she had sucked his thumb before and, taking a curious dare, opened his fingers and thrust three into her mouth.

The realization, from her movement (her breaths were loud, long, and wet beside him, the underside of her tongue between his knuckles hot), that is was what she had wanted, made him, perhaps forty seconds after her, come.


Instructions on how to Translate like Me:

1) Choose a piece of text that highlights a very ‘human moment’—perhaps a physical, sexual and/or emotional experience.

2a) Then go into your Gmail account, click “Compose” and transcribe the text into the body of a new e-mail.

2b) If you don’t have a Gmail account, transcribe the text into Word, save it as a PDF and open in Adobe Acrobat Reader.

3a) Once you’re done transcribing, highlight the text and right-click on it. Select “Speech” and click on “Start Speaking”.

3b) In Adobe, select ‘View’ from the menu bar and scroll down to ‘Read Out Loud’ and click on ‘Activate Read Out Loud.’ Then repeat those steps and click ‘Read To End of Document’.

4) You may wish to record this audio. How you do that, is up to you.