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HERKIND THE DESIRE ISSUE MAY / JUNE 2020

go full 60’s THIS

sUMMER with groovy makeup trends to try yourself

missing the

summer fling

Memories of warm nights with loved girls

THE QUEER DATING POOL Why we always end up making out with our friends’ ex (or our ex’s friend!)

£4.99


TEAM LIKES

THE DESIRE ISSUE

Queer favourites of the season p. 4-5

PRIDE AND CORONAVIRUS

The virus is spreading; Prides are down p. 6

SEXUAL AWAKENING

The crushes that made our gay hearts throb p. 7

SUMMER TRENDS

Two 60s inspired makeup to look groovy this summer p. 8-11

MEET JED PHOENIX

The corsetier reveals her creative tips p.12-13

A BRIEF HISTORY OF FETISHISM

BREAKING THE SEX TOY TABOO A guide to the best toys out there for maximum fun p.15

HEALTHY MIND, HEALTHY SEX

The importance of listening to yourself for good sex p.16

THE QUEER DATING POOL, A LAMENTATION On why you’ll end up with your ex’s best friend p.17

PORTRAIT OF A SUMMER ROMANCE

Sweet stories of passionate summer nights p. 18

HOROSCOPES p.19

Exploring centuries of sexual tendencies p.14

KNOW YOURSELF, YOUR SEXLIFE WILL THANK YOU p.16


SIXTIES SUMMER VIBE p.8-11

meet the creator: Jed Phoenix p. 12-13

Dear womxn,

It feels strange to be writing an editorial letter, sat in my room, having not left this space for the past five days. To say we have produced this issue in the most unusual of times would be understatement. As the world grapples with COVID-19 and takes to self-isolation, we here at Herkind want to remind our readers that - even as they have to turn themselves away from the wider community - they are not alone. Times such as these can be incredibly challenging for young LGBTQ+ womxn, if they are forced to isolate with family members that may not be accepting of their identity and especially if they are essentially cut off from the larger LGBTQ+ community out there that they often find peace in. The Herkind team wants to remind you that even if you currently feel disconnected from the world, we are here to continue to provide support where we can - to continue to fill our role of big sister as we all try to adjust to our new reality. Community and, particularly, our close-knit community of queer womxn - is essential for survival right now. For our readers that are currently forced to isolate in the company of those that don’t necessarily show support for our identity and for those that find their biggest source of comfort in the wider world, we hope that this latest issue will provide some joy amidst these uncertain times. The theme of this issue is desire and, in it, you will find accounts of languorous summer romances shared between womxn, candid discussions of the womxn that opened our eyes to same-sex longing, and a frank approach to talking about the relationship between mental health and sex. So, even if we do have to spend the warmer months inside - this issue of Herkind will be there to remind you of the wonders of exploring burgeoning desires in the sun and to ensure you still have access to a compass for the choppy seas of queerness. We will continue to operate online where we can and to keep you company as the world begins to stay at home and turn to magazines to fill their time with. We will be here, queer and ready to support our readers even when the challenges keep mounting.

Hannah

THE QUEER DATING POOL IS TINY, WE KNOW P. 17

HERKIND @herkindmag bitly.com/herkindmag

Fear you’re not quite on top of all the Herkind slang? Check out our glossary online. If you see a • next to a word, you’ll find it in there! Let us know if we should add more terms!


the

FOMO edit

The Herkind team tell you what they’ve been crushing on...

Sorcha recommends:

L DEVINE, BORING PEOPLE Queer pop princess L Devine’s latest single depicts the mundanities of everyday life as a way to show that we’re all no different from each other. With a dreary 90s garage rock melody, L Devine sings introspective verses that call out how she gets bored with herself sometimes. The message of her wonderful single is clear and is something I took comfort in, the fact we all think we are so different from one another but actually are all going through the exact same struggles.

Kaiya recommends:

PEPPER SMITH, FROM KATY KEENE Pepper Smith is a fictional woman from the new television show Katy Keene – a mixture of Sex and the City and Glee. Identifying as bisexual she often gets her own way by using her sexuality. But, Pepper is also a fantastic businesswoman who tries her hand at many opportunities thrown her way. The classic IT girl knows her worth, knows what she wants and isn’t afraid to get it - what an inspiration. IMAGE CREDITS (starting from far left going clockwise): Warner Bros. Records and BMG Publishing, The CW, @christineandthequeens Instagram, Virago, Netflix, FX

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Elissa recommends:

CHRISTINE AND THE QUEENS We all know - and love - Chris. She’s a pop phenomenon, playing with genders and languages, using French, English and even Italian in her latest EP La Vita Nueva. If we’ve bopped countless times already to her new single, the catchy People I’ve been sad, Chris is also lifting our spirits up during this quarantine, streaming live on her Instagram, every day around 6pm CET. She’s inviting friends and artists for virtual deep talks and dancing sessions, and it’s all we ever needed in these gloomy days.


Vittoria recommends:

POSE POSE is a fairly new TV series that premiered in 2018 on FX but has already been critically acclaimed and won many prizes. It takes place in the late 80s and early 90s, showcasing the lives of African-American and Latino LGBTQ+ people and their involvement with ballroom culture in New York and the HIV/AIDS epidemic without sugarcoating it. And that is Pose’s strength, it’s real and feels real. Although the topic is very niche, it finally represents - very well - a group of people who, as Blanca, one of the main characters says, have everything in “life set up to work against them.”

Ceryn recommends:

VEGAN CINDERELLA FROM EASY The comedy anthology series follows the lives of several Chicagoans, including Chase, a sheltered student who, after a passionate night with a vegan activist (who just so happens to be a girl), abandons her bacon-eating, carbon-emitting ways. The gorgeous episode explores how we (lesbians) try to change ourselves for the sake of relationships and how we sometimes absorb parts of our partners, even when that’s not in our best interests.

Amy recommends:

TIPPING THE VELVET BY SARAH WATERS Published in 1998, the plot focuses on lesbian relationships in Victorian Britain. The protagonist, Nan, who works for her family’s oyster restaurant in Kent, falls in love with a male impersonator, Kitty, who she forms a relationship and moves to London with. Waters has said she is not too concerned with the historical accuracy of her novel, but instead focuses on the stories themselves and relationships between characters. Nan’s sexuality is clear throughout and the novel is an unashamed exploration of queer identity and eroticism, set in a society where lesbianism has been largely unexplored due to the concealed nature of it. The novel was adapted into a popular miniseries by the BBC in 2002.

THE FOMO EDIT / HERKIND / ISSUE 2

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PRIDE AND CORONAVIRUS

.THE QUEER AGENDA. 6

Pride season may be many months away, but coronavirus has already massively disrupted planned celebrations across the world. This is primarily due to the fact that mass gatherings have been banned and social distancing has been introduced in order to reduce and slow transmission so hospitals can cope. It could look like we may all be celebrating this important season at home.

W

HAT’S HAPPENING? Pride season appears to be coming to an abrupt halt due to the outbreak of coronavirus, with more than 75 events across the world being forced to cancel or delay plans. Many more events are still waiting to announce what is happening amidst the current situation. As many as 1,000 Prides were expected to take place in just Europe alone. The European Pride Organisers Association (EPOA) and InterPride have created the COVID-19 / Pride International Coordination Group, which will consider the impact of the coronavirus on the LGBTQ movement. EPOA urged Pride organisers across the world to make contingency plans.

W

HAT’S THE CURRENT SITUATION LIKE? Coronavirus is a novel respiratory virus that originated in Wuhan, China and has spread to over 100 countries. There have been over 250,000 cases reported as of writing and unfortunately, the virus is still very much unknown and

no known cure has been developed for it as of yet, but trials have started.

W

HAT WERE THE RESPONSES? EPOA president, Kristine Garina noted how coronavirus is presenting a whole new challenge for governments and organisations across the world, and Pride is no different. “The unique challenge for Prides is that most are entirely volunteer organisations, where people have to juggle this additional complexity alongside a career or being a full-time carer. We’re doing all we can to help Pride organisers navigate through this challenge.” Following this, responses on Twitter were evidently of dismay, with Pride being such a lookedforward-to event. Yet, cancellations are understandable due to the uncertain times we are in, with one user writing: “I would whine about Pride being cancelled but I actually have more than one braincell and a shred of empathy and know there are many immunocompromised people in the LGBTQ+ community that don’t deserve to be put in harm’s way.”

NEWS / HERKIND / ISSUE 2

H

OW IS IT REALLY? Pride season, typically the month of June, is important because it allows us to feel connected while also remembering our history, but obviously dealing with the outbreak of coronavirus is top priority now. As of writing, over 10,000 people have died from the virus and the only way to slow this is to ‘flatten the curve’. This involves social distancing and avoiding mass gatherings and unnecessary travel to stop the spread of the virus. Pride would, of course, be a mass gathering and could allow for the spread of coronavirus, especially to vulnerable people and with current statistics, it’s simply not worth it. This year can see us celebrating Pride across the world from the safety of our own homes but in a sense that will show how our community is stronger than ever.

1.5

Million people went to

London Pride in 2019

making it the largest ever for the city


Naya Rivera

from Glee - Elisa She’s the reason I was curious - Kaiya

Claire Danes

- and specifically in Romeo+Juliet!! - Hannah

Winona Ryder in Dracula – sorry, Gary Oldman, not for me! - Em

Sam

from Danny Phantom!! - Sorch

L A U SEX ENING K A AW ADE

M WHO

AGE

TEEN R U O Y

Shegoossibl e

Ashley Spinelli

from Recess - Issy

ROB? H T T HEAR

from

Kim P ll of a - well, mxn o w the cters! ch ara Emma

THAT

Black Swan

Bella Swan

scene Emma

from Twilight; team Jacob/Edward who? - Elisa

CULTURE | HERKIND | ISSUE 2

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That 60’s

groove The Herkind team brings you the freshest makeup looks to groove up your summer


DON’T BE BLUE Elena is wearing: The Color Workshop, blues from the color wave eyes palette (£12) Sephora Collection silvers from Bag Palette (£25) Rimmel Maxi Blush in Wild Card (£7) KIKO Milano 3D Hydra lipgloss in Cream Cashmere (£7.50)

FASHION / HERKIND / ISSUE 2

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GET THE LOOK Elena is wearing: The Color Workshop, yellows from the color wave eyes palette (£12) Yves Rocher Eyeliner Mat .01 (£11.50) Golden Rose Dream Lips Lipliner in 503 (£3) Nyx Powder Puff Lippie in Cool Intentions (£8.50)

FASHION / HERKIND / ISSUE 2

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EE T

THE CREATOR WHO

M

JED PHOENIX

How did you get started? I dropped out of a social sciences degree in 1992. I was asked to model by a fashion student for London Fashion Week when on my way to the jobcentre. A few months later I met Velda Lauder, a corsetiere who dressed stars like Dita Von Teese. I became her production assistant. Then towards the end of the 90s I wrote a business plan for my own business and got funding from The Prince’s Trust.

How has your brand evolved? I come from quite a punk fetish background. I started my business as ‘Obscure Labels’ which brought some of my social sciences into it because the labels were all about identity and the fact that labels don’t really tell the whole story. I created pieces like a T-shirt that said ‘Queer’ but had some letters missing so it wasn’t obvious what the message was unless you were aware of that kind of language. I went from designing T-shirts trousers to classic wrap bondage trousers, the second of which is now in Brighton Museum as part of their permanent subgroups exhibition.

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Jed Phoenix is a 49 year old queer fashion designer who works and lives in London. © GAYNOR PERRY

Why are corsets so popular? Why corsets?

Velda Lauder died in 2013. I wore one of her corsets to her funeral, took a selfie and put it on Facebook and someone asked me if I was going to start designing corsets. I thought actually I would because it was a way of keeping Velda’s legacy going; without her I probably wouldn’t have started my clothing business.

I remember when I was working with Velda, it was all very much about empowering women and she saw corsetry as unleashing the warrior woman within, which is quite a strange concept in a way. You are restricted but you feel empowered. Putting a corset on does feel like a hug to me. For some people, they might see corsetry as restricting and constricting and quite submissive but I think it’s about interpretation really. You can’t slouch in a wellmade corset, it will hold you and add a layer of strength.


WILL KINK UP YOUR QUEER Jed Phoenix is a London-based fashion designer who creates corsets as well as alternative and fetish clothing How have you succeeded in growing a creative business? I think being humble is important. Don’t think you’re going to be an overnight success, you might have to do the same thing over and over again. For some people that will be boring but for others like me it will be a meditation. If you can solve problems - that’s one of the recipes for success. Observe and learn, if you’re in a creative business you will always have problems to solve and the ability to learn.

Her brand, Jed Phoenix of London, is a sought-after blend of punk, fetish and alternative clothing.

Any advice for LGBTQ+ womxn?

© RICHARD BAILEY

How do you identify? I identify as queer. To me, that label encapsulates my sexuality, my gender, my lifestyle, my political views and my neuro type, more than any other word does. I categorise my garments as menswear and womenswear but that’s because the cut of the garment is based on body shape. I’m not trying to fit people into boxes, I’ve had guys wear my skirts and women wear my trousers.

What’s your preferred relationship style? I’ve tried polyamory• and found that I’m better being passively poly; I’m happy for my partner to go off and see other people, but I find that it’s hard for me to be actively polyamorous. I’ve kind of been married to my business, I’ve had exes in the past who have jokingly said “I’m your mistress and your work is your wife.”

CULTURE / HERKIND / ISSUE 2

Be true to yourself and don’t mess people around if you can help it. With the accessibility of online now, if you know that you’re queer find your tribe! Take your time to build connections in your community. Don’t try to fit into the mainstream if you don’t feel mainstream.

WHERE CAN YOU BUY HER LOOKS? Find her on Instagram at @jedphoenixoflondonfashion Website: Jedphoenix.com Etsy: JedPhoenixStyle Jed considers her corsets to be investments, so you might need to save for that. But she’s got an affordable range of alternative t-shirts on her Etsy if you want to get a slice of Jed Phoenix’s fashion!

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DID YOU KNOW? A brief history of fetishisM

Elissa explores the evolution of an often misunderstood preference, whether sexual or not.

15-18th centur y

The notion of fetishism originated from the Atlantic exchanges between Africa and Europe, defined as ‘what reason was not’. They believed it described the way ‘primitive’ societies worshipped specific objects, which became a ‘trend’ they thought vilified trading, as merchants gave objects to swear they would honor a transaction. To a modern eye, it can easily be analysed as the very first apparition of Marx’s commodity fetishism.

Credits (from left to right) ; William Jackson; John Jabes Edwin Mayall ; Lehmann; Max Halberstadt; Charles-Henri Favrod ; Andy Warhol

1905

Freud developed his Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality on the basis of these studies. To him, fetishism emerged from the fact that the child believed his mother should have a phallus and hence associated an external object to fill in the gap. If the boy kept on believing in it, his oedipian cycle would not resolve itself, so he would not be able to take his father’s place, and own the power of his own phallus. Fetishism, then, was not only abnormal, it was also heavily masculinised. Women and sexuality, ha! What else did we want? Equality?! Voting rights?!

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1876

Marx rebirthed the idea with his analysis of capitalism and consumerism in his political essay Capital. He developed the theory of commodity fetishism, where every social relation turned people into objects with value, and the relationships between these values created a capital. Once again, a common denominator: an ‘object’ on which relies the concept of fetishism.

950’S THE 1

Years later, Jacques Lacan switched the theory. For him, fetishism comes from the phallus that the mother doesn’t have – it’s a symbolic phallus. Similarly, fetishism develops in a boy when he replaces the phallus that is missing by an external object. Yet, the girl has an active part as she’s impacted by the absence of the phallus, which becomes more important than the presence of a man. She searches for an object which would enable her to fill in the gap she thinks she has (is that why we use strap-ons, friends?). Once again, not acknowledging that this symbolic phallus is not a reality meant children would grow up “perverse”.

SEX / HERKIND / ISSUE 2

The 18 80’s

Soon after, the theory of fetishism was applied to the realm of sexuality and love. In 1882, Charcot studied sexual perversions and gender reversals; in 1886, Krafft-Ebing analysed perversions, classified them from necrophilia to fetishism in Psychopathia Sexualis. In 1887, Alfred Binet analysed how fetishistic aspects were present in every form of ‘normal love’ in Fetishism in Love. All of them concluded in some way that fetishists had ‘a subjective psychical state that has its roots in the association of the awakening of genital excitation with an exterior fact’, ie. a fetishistic object.

Sinc e the 90

s

The ‘perverse’ idea of fetishism crumbled in the last thirty years. 1) The fall of communism propagated the idea that commodities were to be celebrated - advertising and art, including work by Andy Warhol, renewed the vision of fetishism. 2) ALL of these theories were based on the assumption that sex is for ~BIOLOGICAL REPRODUCTION~ Basically, their ‘mental illness’ approach was that, because fetishism = sex for self-pleasure, and not reproduction, it was a big no-no. Since then, we’ve pretty much agreed that sex is for pleasure. And, between us, we’re quite happy things have changed!


This bullet vibrator is four inches long and comes with 10 different speeds. The sloped shape of the head means that it can be used for targeted vibration at the point, but also for stimulation of a larger area when using the flat side. This is small enough to pop in your bag for easy transport, but packs a punch. It’s waterproof, easy to control and perfect for solo or partnered play.

Being tied up can be fun! Simple but effective, these soft handcuffs are used to restrain your partner when you want to take some control. They’re great to use if you’re starting to explore new territories and want to try something new. With a tailored fit and a quick release, they’ll surely spice things up in the bedroom!

Get yours from Peaches and Screams for £30

Get yours from Lovehoney for £12.99

breaking the

sex toy TABOO

Kaiya and Maude explore the exciting world of sex toys Sex toys are often frowned upon in society and are seen as dirty or weird. But funnily enough it’s completely normal to use them and there shouldn’t be any shame in enjoying them yourself or in your relationships. We’ve selected some that we think will enhance your experience!

LGBTQ+ sex shops to try For the Closet Not an exclusively LGBTQ+ sex toy shop, but they have an entire section dedicated to lesbian sex toys for couples and individuals. Their products vary in price and they have over 5,000 to choose from. For the Closet ships in discreet packaging with tracked deliveries, and all toys come with free batteries so you can have fun as soon as they arrive!

Wet For Her This is an online sex toy shop exclusively for lesbians and all of their toys are designed to be non-realistic. Founded in 2009 by Alice Derock, all their products are shipped discreetly and are made of medical grade silicone and free from phthalates.

Sh! Women’s Store Launched in 1992, by lesbian Ky Hoyle, it was the UK’s first female sex shop and boutique erotica store. The shop is aimed at acceptance of female sexuality and pushes womxn to take control of their sexuality. It only allows men inside the store when accompanied by a womxn in order to ensure a safe and secure space.

This is a cute silver 5” glitter g-spot vibrator that’s designed precisely for g-spot stimulation. It’s a good toy to use if you’re new to the vibrator scene as it’s made with soft jelly material with a pointed tip. You can also change the vibration settings to your choosing just by twisting the top.

If anal play is something you want to explore, this 4.25 inch butt plug is the perfect way to start. The plug is made from 100% silicone and is tapered for easy insertion. Anal play is completely safe and fun, but make sure you use lube to fully enjoy the experience!

Get yours from Ann Summers for £15

Get yours from Sh! Women’s Store for £15

SEX / HERKIND / ISSUE 2

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Mental health in bed: Our relationship with anxiety and sex Sorcha and Vittoria discuss the anxieties they have about sex and their tips to surmount them

T

he relationship between mental health and sex is a difficult one. We are so stuck on the idea that sex is supposed to feel good, that we begin to feel inadequate and insecure, putting even more pressure on our ‘sexual performance’. This isn’t exactly feeling anxious about being good in bed, rather about feeling good with yourself and your partner while having sex. This can be incredibly heightened when struggling with a mental health problem, sometimes making it impossible for us to feel relaxed enough within ourselves and our partner to enjoy or even have sex because we are so overcome with worries. A JBI report, a not-for-profit organisation, found that about 15% of the general population is dissatisfied with their own sex life and this percentage is significantly higher for people with mental health problems. For me, Sorcha, the feeling of uncomfortableness stems from when I first started

having sex - this was with men as I was still figuring out my sexuality at the time. I found that men would blame me if something went wrong during sex, I attribute this to just being young teenagers but it affected my confidence moving forward. As a result, I now will only sleep with people I feel comfortable with but even that can be a struggle because of my anxiety.

1/3 OF WOMXN AT UNIVERSITY FEEL UNCOMFORTABLE IN THEIR SKIN I, Vittoria, have never felt comfortable about having sex. Even before losing my virginity I had a feeling of anxiousness permeating the air around the topic. My issue has always been with my body image. I have never liked the way I looked – those curves all in the wrong places, the lack of muscles first and not having enough now, the way my boobs look.

There are times when I think that maybe I can like my body but it hardly ever happens and doesn’t last for long. So I am never 100% confident or relaxed while having sex, even if it’s with someone I know. It takes years to improve only one aspect of our personality or the way we think, so don’t expect to wake up one day and find all those worries have gone. It’s a constant, quite hard process. There is no right answer as to where to start to feel more confident in bed. You need to first understand what it is that is making you feel uncomfortable and then find small ways to overcome it or improve it. And if you think this hasn’t answered any of your questions and doubts, that’s because Sorch and I are still trying to overcome this anxiety around sex. Don’t be too harsh on yourself, it’s a long way before you’ll finally feel good about it. Maybe start by following some of the tips that have helped us along the way! w

Give these a try...

get educated

treat yo’ self

Having a good knowledge of sex can help us learn to be more sex positive.

Buying new underwear and trying it on in the mirror can boost your confidence.

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moisturise Applying moisturiser to yourself after a shower can help you to get to know your body more.

sex / HERKIND / ISSUE 2

communicate Being open to your partner about your struggles can hopefully ease some of your worries.


THE QUEER

DATING POOL

Remember The Chart? If not, Hannah explains why the joke of a close-knit queer community is still as relevant as ever

W

hen I first started watching The L Word, a TV series aired on Showtime in the early 2000s, as a teenager, I didn’t really believe it when the characters talked extensively about how tiny the lesbian dating pool was. There is one particularly famous scene in which Alice, a ma jor character on the show, draws up a map that demonstrates the links between the various gay and bisexual women that were at the epicentre of the show’s community. This network becomes known as ‘The Chart’ and, with this, the characters figure out the romantic connections they share with one another and what dangerously close proximity they are to each other. When said characters on the show laughed and joked about swapping girlfriends and how each of them had hooked up with the other, I presumed it was just an exaggeration - surely, this couldn’t happen in real life. No actual queer womxn did this, right? Reader, I was wrong. I’ve been dating other womxn now properly for the past five years or so and, as it turns out, we are all guilty of hooking up with friends, the ex-partners of friends and various acquaintances that we had no idea were so intrinsically linked to former flings or ex-girlfriends. This phenomenon is something I have tried - and failed - to explain to my straight friends for years. When they ask me, once again, how I ended up hooking up with my ex’s friend, or my friend’s ex, and why I don’t seem capable of meeting someone that I’m not already explicitly linked to in one way or another, I tell them that it’s because dating for us is limited to a certain pool. Unlike my heterosexual counterparts, there is no endless sea of single, queer womxn out there for me to meet - particularly not in a small, contained city such as my beloved Cardiff. As LGBTQ+ womxn, we are often forced to make do with a tiny network of potential romantic entanglements while we watch the straight folks in our friendship groups manage to meet partners or hook-ups with absolutely no correlation whatsoever to anyone else they know. While the figures are rising with regards to how many people identify as LGBTQ+ in the UK, communities amongst queer womxn are still close-knit. We often band together to survive in a world that still often tells us that we are not valid and that banding together often leads us to form romantic and sexual relationships with those our former partners and friends have also embarked on experiences with - we cling to each other because we are in constant survival mode. mode. w

RELATIONSHIPS / HERKIND / ISSUE 2

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PORTRAIT OF A SUMMER ROMANCE

JULIA

MEMO RI

ES

HANNAH It was 2018, sometime in July and the temperature had hit a record high across the country. Everywhere you went, jubilation and joy were present - England had reached the semi-finals of the World Cup, Love Island was the word on everyone’s lips and, all the while, I was living out a fantasy of a summer romance akin to the experiences of Call Me By Your Name’s Elio Perlman. I had, for the umpteenth time in my life, fallen in love and I was spending the warm, languorous days surrendering to one of the most intense affairs I’d ever known. In true queer womxn’s fashion, I only spent a grand total of one summer with a woman I believed - at the time - to be the love of my young life and by the time the autumn had set in, our relationship had reached its inevitable end. After a series of hurdles following an emotional fallout of nuclear proportions, the two of us remain friends and we look back fondly on a summer spent as if we were trapped in a romantic novel of our own making. It was, in brief, a heady summer affair set in a dreamscape, even if it wasn’t supposed to last for too long. But such is the nature of a great many queer romances, they burn bright and fast as we scramble to try and secure a seat at the table of domesticity that our heterosexual friends have enjoyed for years.

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OF

WARM S HT G I N

WITH

ED LOV GIR

LS

RELATIONSHIPS / HERKIND / ISSUE 2

Clem had a pale skin that turned pink under the sunshine, freckles popping up on her cheeks. Her eyes were a deep blue, and her hair fierce red. She had that little smile, where she twisted her lips in the loveliest way. Clem was passionate about everything she talked about - a journey to university turned into the thriller of the decade as she typed it furiously. Our friendship started online, and we spent countless hours chatting about movies we had seen, books our favourite author had published or the latest weird thing her cat had decided to experiment. She would make me giggle and turn a beetroot red, my screen freezing on the oddest faces; yet, we both knew this light-hearted flirt was doomed from the start. At the end of the summer, she was off to the land of the rising sun, and I was off to the land of pubs and rugby. That was nothing, however, to our queer minds: the few weeks we had together were enough to plan the grandest of escapades. We dreamt of Paris, snuggled in a friends’ flat, roaming in the Louvre together. We thought we’d meet up in Brittany and share a crêpe and lace fingers. It was all words, tender promises whispered on the phone in the early hours of the day. Can you believe, reader, I didn’t get to play with her hair and kiss her pale cheek? Can you believe this summer passion ended splashed by a cold ice bucket as I flew, without notice, to the other side of the world, for an impromptu family reunion, a week before we were to finally meet? Yes, reader – I’m still as frustrated as you are. It was brief, ephemeral, and yet, oh so lovely.


HO T~oscope

will you have your own summer romance?

Happy Birthday Taureans! Your social prowess really shines through during these months, so look forward to some great times.. Desire for you is all about familiarity and feeling safe – this is what people find most attractive about TAURUS you. You’re extremely sensual and, although you don’t really chase people, once you have a connection with someone you are all in.

Happy Birthday Gemini! With the Sun and Venus in Gemini over these two months, your natural wit will be even more attractive than usual! You like experimenting in the bedroom, being spontaneous and switching GEMINI things up often. These months will have a lot of planets in your sign, so be prepared to feel very in your element!

The most important thing in times of intimacy for you, Cancer, is the need to feel safe and secure. The emotional connection between you and your partner is crucial for you to have the best experience. Quite a few planets are in Cancer during this two-month CANCER period, so you will feel quite at home with the energy around you.

LEO

Leos love to be the centre of attention, especially in the bedroom, however you still want to make sure that your partner are having as much of a good time as you are! In May your cool, popular and social side will be attracting people to you. People are naturally attracted to your aura, and these two months fit the trend!

Concerning attraction, things have to be aesthetically pleasing and sensual for you Libra as you appreciate the finer things in life. You also enjoy the initial stages of banter and flirting with potential partners, especially so LIBRA in May. In June you will feel more passionate and fiery in love, with your seductive powers being boosted by Mars in Aries. Your imaginative and witty energy is what makes you attractive. You are unapologetically yourself, attracting people who respect that! You’re spontaneous in the bedroom so you’re always ready to try something new! On 5 June there is a full moon in Sagittarius which will make you SAGITTARIUS focus on your bigger purpose in life with increased optimism and hope. Individuality is your most identifiably trait, and this is no different when it comes to your sexual adventure – you are imaginative, innovative and definitely unconventional. You need a partner that isn’t afraid to try new things! A new moon in Gemini on AQUARIUS 22 May will prompt you to crave change and to talk out your emotions.

Horoscopes by Ash, follow her on Twitter @ashhhh737

Be prepared to be on your top flirting game during May. With Mars in Pisces you may find desire and attraction a bit more emotional and dreamy than you prefer. In June, your attractiveness moves from your wit and (cheesy) ARIES lines to the way you carry yourself as Mars moves into Aries. You love the chase and this placement puts you back to comfortable energies.

Virgoa are highly sexual and sensual underneath that cold exterior. Some even compare to you to Scorpio levels of kinky! Your goal is always to perfect every skill, and this includes in the bedroom, where you really aim to please and impress your partner! VIRGO During these months focus on communicating with those close to you.

These two months, people will be attracted to your understanding or ‘seeing’ energy. In May, the heavy water energy means your emotional side becomes enhanced. Whereas in June the energy becomes more fiery and capitalizes on the classic Scorpio’s physical SCORPIO attraction and air of mystery. As always, a great time for attraction for you Scorpio!

What people often overlook about Capricorn is you are the literal embodiment of ‘Lawful Good in the sheets, Chaotic Evil in the sheets’ (my favourite gender-neutral version of this saying!). Behind closed doors you aim to impress your partner with your stamina. Over these two months look out for CAPRICORN periods of introspection. You’re romantic, playful and value an emotional connection during sex – all at the same time! You’re intuitive to your partner’s needs, but you’re also very sensitive to your own needs. Sex for you is a true energy connection! During these months with Mercury in Cancer, aided by the water energy, PISCES be prepared to be very retrospective.

HOROSCOPES / HERKIND / ISSUE 2

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