Published by arrangement with the Olympia Press.
Author: Wu Wu Ming (Sinclair Beiles adapted this work).
About: One of the funniest moments in the history of Olympia came when the South African poet Sinclair Beiles entered Girodias' office with sheets of paper adorned by Chinese characters. Telling Girodias a story about youth spent among missionaries in China, Beiles indicated his reams of parchment, and stated that they were unique erotic writings from that nation, and all he'd need to translate this phenomenal document would be some money each week for a new chapter...
As it turns out, Beiles was working from an earlier translation of the 15th century erotic classic Jin Ping Mei, a work about Hsi Men (Ximen Qing) and his six wives that, with its graphic descriptions and instructions, is said to have inspired the Kama Sutra, among other books. The Jin, Ping and Mei in the title are the later three wives, and the most interesting ones for our purposes.
One of those later spouses, whose name translates as Golden Lotus, is a character from the classic "Outlaws of the Marsh," delightful woman lady who poisons her ugly, smelly, not-getting-it-done first husband to marry the libertine Hsi Men, and is punished for this crime by the tiger-slaying, heroic brother of husband one. In Jin Ping Mei, Hsi Men is able to take advantage of the corrupt regime and have that heroic brother sent far, far away, while he continues to enjoy his wives and lifestyle.
Beiles simplified and improved upon his translation, removing tedious interviews with court officials and drawing out some of the more intimate scenes.
The work is also known, in English, as "Golden Lotus," "The Love Pagoda," "The Six Wives of Hsi Men," etc...
“Oh, yes, Wu,” he repeated absently. “Not a very common name in this
district—Wu. Might the pastry-dealer, Wu Ta, the so-called Three-Inch
Manikin, be any relation of yours?”
She flushed red for shame, “My husband,” she breathed, drooping her
For a moment he was stricken dumb, and looked wildly around as though
he had lost his senses. Then in a pathetic tone of voice, he cried:
“What an outrage!”
“Why, what injury have you suffered?” she asked in amusement, eyeing
“An outrage to you, not to me!”
And now he began to pay court to her in long, flowery phrases, with
many an “Honoured Lady” and “Gracious One.” Meanwhile, as she fingered
her coat, and nibbled at the seam of her sleeve, she provided an
accompaniment to his speech, without stopping her nibbling, in the
shape of a spirited retort, or a mischievous sidelong glance. And now,
on the pretext that the heat was oppressive, he suddenly drew off his
thin, green silk surcoat.
“Would you oblige me by putting this on my adoptive mother's bed?” he
She turned away from him with a shrug.
“Why don't you do it yourself? Your hands are not paralysed,” she
replied, merrily nibbling her sleeve.
“Well, if you won't, you won't.”
With outstretched arm he reached over the table and threw the garment
on to the stove on which the old woman slept. His sleeve caught on one
of the chopsticks, and swept it to the floor, and—oh, how
providentially!—the chopstick rolled under her dress!
“Is this perhaps your chopstick?” she asked with a smile, pressing
her little foot on it.
“Oh, there it is!” he said, in pretended surprise, and he stooped;
but instead of picking up the chop-stick he gently pressed his hand on
her gaily embroidered slipper. She burst out laughing.
“What are you thinking of? I shall scream!”
He fell on his knees before her.
“Most gracious lady, take pity on a wretched man!' he sighed, while
his hand crept upwards along her thigh.
Struggling and throwing up her hands, with outspread fingers, she
cried: “Why, you naughty, dissolute fellow! I'll give you such a box on
“Ah, gracious lady, it would be bliss even to die at your hands!”
And without giving her time to reply, he took her in his arms and
laid her down on Mother's Wang's bed. There he loosened her girdle, and
Dear reader, consider the ecstasy of a Chang nun, the rarest flower
amongst our women, when first she sees the quest of her foot-torn
pilgrimage. On hands and knees she has panted to the summit of a barren
hill and collapses exhausted. The southern evening air fondles her with
chilly fingers and all there is to comfort her are stinging nettles and
rock as cold as the loins of a dead lover. Vain renunciation.
She lifts her head as if to seek a place to die, but lo! One moment
her eyes are as dark as pebbles, and the next as luciferous as that
giant diamond which blocks the heavenly orifice of the chief nun,
guarding her virginity. What is the maiden gazing at? What sight has
struck her like a thunderbolt?
She stands erect and casts aside her silken cloak, the thin cloak
that sheathes her body from the icy air. Her nipples glow like wet
coral, and her hair like phosphorescent waves tossing along the
seashore in the darkest nights.
At sight of her, what Buddhist baldhead would not discover a third
drumstick to beat the temple parchment? The furry cushion, that nest
for eagles in the fork of her thighs is alive at last! It clicks
electrically, and then it is moist and pulsing—a hungry mouth.
Down in the valley, her quest rears itself and sunders the sky—a
pylon of flesh-coloured marble with two gigantic rocks of quartz where
it springs from the earth—god and eternal life to the choicest maidens
of the Chang nunnery. Here they come, a thousand leagues beyond the
Great Wall, to make their final sacrifice. There's the priest lurking
in the shadows of the pylon. He has seen her and his eyes are flashing.
Their flashing vies with that of the silver knife he draws from a soft