Kim Davis, the bigoted Kentucky county clerk who spent six weeks in jail after refusing to issue same-sex marriage licenses on the grounds of her religious beliefs, is now back at work and withholding her name from licenses being issued by her deputies.
In a new act of rebellion, Davis has bitterly replaced her name and title with a metonymical “pursuant to federal court order.” She’s also been on a media tour to defend accusations that she’s homophobic (Bill Maher recently called her the “Rosa Parks of homophobia”), insisting on Good Morning America that she has “friends who are gay and lesbians.”
She speaketh the truth: The Daily Beast tracked down one of them, a man named Dallas Black, whom Davis comforted while assisting him with paperwork after his mother died.
Black once thought of Davis as a “kind, sweet person,” he said, but he doesn’t “know who Kim is at the moment” and she certainly wouldn’t be invited to his wedding.
Indeed, it’s been a big week for Davis, whose latest-of-many appeals—that a judge relieve her from licensing all marriages while her case is pending—was rejected on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, Davis is hell-bent on keeping her job as an elected public official without doing the required work, defying the Supreme Court’s legalization of same-sex marriage in June. And her arrogant persistence could land her back in prison.
Maybe more time behind bars would inspire a change of heart in Davis—a come-to-Jesus moment of realizing that God probably doesn’t care if the government puts its stamp of approval on a gay couple’s marriage.
Maybe she’d be forced to make new friends, more gay friends, who would make her realize that “God’s will” involves her sexually submitting to lesbian prison guards and getting freaky with her cellmate.
This is how Lilith St. Augustine envisions life working out for Davis in her erotic novella, Kim Goes to Jail: An Erotic Story.
The idea of a dour-faced Davis starring in erotica may be hard to stomach: ignorance, self-righteousness, bigotry disguised as religious freedom, and a partiality for frumpy knitwear layering aren’t ideal ingredients for literary porn.
But St. Augustine couldn’t resist satirizing the Kim Davis saga.
“It just seemed so perfectly teed up,” she told The Daily Beast. “The irony, the schadenfreude, the catharsis even if delivered by way of fantasy. Not to mention I immediately thought the premise would be hilarious.”
Kim Goes to Jail opens with Davis getting her mugshot taken, ranting about how much she hates being photographed and all the media attention she’s been getting (“Do I look like the kinda person who goes for that kind of vanity?”).
Her husband, who drew comparisons on Twitter to Lenny from Of Mice and Men when he appeared in overalls at a press conference following her jail release, is “a meek little feller if ever there was one.”
Davis is hardly literate, though she’s memorized every chapter and verse of The Bible and recites it at every turn in prison.
She’s equally terrified and titillated by Krystal, a sadomasochistic prison guard who has it in for Davis, asserting her authority with a baton-dildo.
One encounter with Krystal’s baton leaves Davis’s stomach “knotted up like a hog during the annual Pigs n ‘Pokes Jubilee.”
Davis immediately takes a shine to Chastity, her half-black cellmate (“She seemed genuine, not one for apologies. My kinda person”) who vows to protect her from Krystal. Ladies have to stick together to survive this place, Chastity tells Davis, meaning they all have to pair off as lovers or join one of the shower orgies.
Davis initially resists Chastity’s attempts to give her a masturbation “refresher.”
“I use my hands for prayin’ not playin’,” she tells Chastity, reciting the Bible to herself. “They that are in the flesh cannot please the Lord. Romans 8:8”
When Chastity starts going at it herself, Davis is enthralled by the sight of her “pinching her nipple till it was harder’n a deaf man tryin’ to win a mule auction.”
Davis muses: “One day I’m standin’ on the side of the Lord against sexual perversion, and the next I’m in prison orange watchin’ a buck nekkid mulatto vixen ‘bout to do impure things to herself and to my soul in one single, terrifying act.”
Before long, Davis turns a corner and falls for Chastity, whose bum cheeks are “firm but soft at the same time, like your favorite throw pillow ‘cept without the fringe.” The two have all kinds of lesbian sex, which suddenly evokes ecstatic passages from the Bible. (On being orally pleasured: “Surely you have tasted the greatness of the Lord. 1 Peter 2:3”).
By the end, Davis is a lesbian convert who subverts the Good Book to validate her steamy romance (“Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman. Leviticus 18:22”).
The novella is indeed hilarious, and St. Augustine cleverly conveys Davis’s perversion of “religious liberty” when it comes to performing her job, as if believing she’s an agent of God should grant her exceptions as an elected agent of the county government.
St. Augustine pokes fun at her above-the-law arrogance early on in Kim Goes to Jail, when Davis resists standard strip-search protocol upon arriving at prison and refuses to say how much she weighs: “That ain’t no one’s business ‘cept me and the Lord.”
St. Augustine is clearly familiar with Southern slang (she's lived “under the Mason-Dixon my whole life”) and, one would think from Kim Goes to Jail, with Christianity.
Before Kim, St. Augustine authored another erotic novella, Adam & Eve in the Garden of Infinite Pleasure, which is “much more in the vein of straightforward literary erotica,” she told The Daily Beast via email. “Its language is certainly more, uh, refined than what you’ll encounter in Kim Goes to Jail.”
St. Augustine never published anything satirical before, with the exception of a pirate romance novel the she wrote when very young, though she says it "would be more accurately described as parody.”
St. Augustine doesn’t believe that any religious beliefs should be exempt from satire. “If someone is saying or doing things that are arguably contemptible, there shouldn’t be any free passes because those words or deeds can be couched in religious terms," she says.
The author declines to give away her own religiosity. “I’d rather let people make their own guesses, with the understanding that those guesses may well be informed by the subjects and contents of my writing.”
She also refuses to say whether Lilith St. Augustine is her real name or a nom de plume, and doesn’t divulge any other personal information. “I’d rather the writing speak for itself, and mystery and imagination can take it from there as they please.”
St. Augustine is less coy when voicing an opinion about Kim Davis.
“Frankly, I find her position so untenable that arguments about it are hardly even interesting,” she says, and would like to believe that the politicians grandstanding on Davis's behalf are only doing so to score political points. “They can’t honestly be that daft, can they?”