R. M. Stineman


Date of Interview: April 25, 2020

Interview Location: Jersey City, NJ (recorded remotely)

Pronouns: he/him

Place of Birth: Newton, KS

Birth Year: 1962

Occupation: non-profit executive/consultant

Interviewer: Elliot Wesselborg

Summary: Stine talks about receiving one of the first HIV diagnoses in Iowa, an FBI raid at the Midwest Men’s Festival, RFD magazine and maintaining his connection to Iowa through the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence.

Sr. Clara CumPassionata/Joshua Carpenter Brown


Date of Interview: April 23, 2020

Interview Location: Newton, IA (recorded remotely)

Pronouns: she/her

Place of Birth: Peoria, IL

Birth Year: 1956

Occupation: substance abuse counselor, performance artist (Sister of Perpetual Indulgence)

Interviewer: Elliot Wesselborg

Summary: Sr. Clara talks about her involvement in the Peoria, IL drag scene in the 1970s, RFD magazine, her introduction to the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence at Short Mountain Sanctuary in TN and her experiences creating community from a farmhouse in Newton, IA.

View and Download Sister Clara Transcript 2020(PDF)

View and Download Sister Clara Transcript 2020(txt)

Esther Hwang

Date of Interview: May 6, 2019

Interview Location: Music Practice Room in Bucksbaum Center for the Arts, Grinnell College

Pronouns: she/they

Place of Birth: Lubbock, TX

Birth Year: 1997

Occupation: Student

Interviewer: Lydia James

Esther’s Poem:

Meditation on Asexuality

Part 1

My sex has been coopted by TV, porn, and yellow fever

I want my sex back

Asexuality is a sexuality

It’s the sexiest thing


To vow to love myself first

To touch myself first

To desire myself first

Before anyone else

I listen to healing meditation while I masturbate

It’s a spiritual experience.

When I’m horny I don’t seek outside of myself.

I choose myself because I can make myself come like no one else can.

What is climax?

Remember that the Western world has confused itself on the importance of penises entering vaginas and has eroticized any high pitched noise that comes out of a woman’s mouth.

Sex is not the only thing.

And what is sex anyway? Masturbation is sex. It’s the best sex when I can make a juicy puddle with two fingers and a vibrator.

I once made myself come 13 times without laying a finger on myself.

The secret was a lot of weed, studio headphones, and some good beats.


Answer me this.

How is melting from human to fluid by hearing the sound of my own songs not sex?

How is going on a run for the euphoria of blood rushing through my body not self-pleasure?

How is biting into a juicy lucy and moaning and sobbing into my burger with my friends not a big circle jerk?

How is rolling around in the grass and feeling every nerve brush against Mother Earth not the purest most beautiful form of physical intimacy and release?


Part 2

Asexuality is seeing past all of the noise

And feeling

Feeling myself

Asexuality is feeling only myself

It is pleasing myself

It is removing subject and object

And recovering what always was.


Part 3

Asexuality is not lack of sexual desire.

It is lack of sexual attraction to others.