There was this one photo buried in a spread in French Vogue at some point in 1983. Shot in black and white, this one photo showed a close up of Jerry Hall’s gloriously equine face, her blond hair falling in amber waves, her eyes slitted near-shut, her mouth painted a rapturous shade of what must have been red and delicately wrapped around the marble toe of a statue. The copy of Vogue has gone the way of all flesh; I carted it around with me for years until it got shucked off in some great purge of stuff. It was that photo, the one of Jerry Hall giving toe, that made me keep the magazine for so many years.
Toe sucking rarely gets its rightful share of visual representation. For all of the ways magazines can sell stuff through artfully composed shots of metaphoric kink—blondes or brunettes swilling long necks, sheeny-slick piles of emaciated models looking like they just emerged pansy-eyed in a post-coital swoon from a D/s dungeon, bent-over jeans models proffering round and mysterious butts that jut to invite the eye and more, jewelry hanging like gyves around wrists and ankles—toe sucking gets pretty short shrift. Perhaps only cunnilingus gets less visual air time, but then as pornographers world-wide have discovered, it’s hard to shoot the licking of a pussy. This is not the case with toe sucking. Toes stick out; they’re easy to suck; it’s a picture just waiting…and waiting to happen.
Toe sucking bears the inescapable taint of fetish. Toe sucking, like rubber clothes, like age play, like any sex act involving hats, seems to be a speciality act. It’s not, of course. No gear is required to suck a toe or ten. One needn’t even be particularly into feet to enjoy having one’s toes sucked, nor to suck them. That’s my position and I’m sticking to it.
I enjoy a good toe suck every now an then. I prefer mine in someone else’s mouth, just as I prefer being the salad tosee to being the salad tosser. I know it’s not an equitable thing, but all is not fair in love and war, and I’d rather be the one being eaten than the one doing the eating. In my mind, I’m the succulent dish, and I say this being a woman avowedly stuck in her oral stage. It’s the strange imparsability of the feeling. The toe in another’s mouth bears a paradoxical keenness and a blunting of sensation. It’s a feeling that’s bigger than itself, or bigger than my toes, anyway. Maybe it’s that my toes get so little notice except for pain that when they get a bounty of pleasure, such as they derive from being nestled like little white chocolate eggs in another’s mouth, they get a bit giddy with it. It’s a surfeit of feeling, the toe sucking.
The first man who sucked my toes was Vlad the Would-Be Impaler. He did it in a hot tub. I was a fool not to recognize his seduction for what it was. I still, 26 years later, kick myself for not fucking him. I don’t remember the next person or the person after that; there have been lots. Toe sucking was something I know I indulged in with many men (and a few women). But the next one who was really into it was the Goat Gatherer. He’d fuck me, one of my legs extended up his stubbly, chiseled torso, one of my feet stuck in his mouth. He said he liked toes, the way they felt, the way the smelled. I would always have a pedicure before seeing him. He’d rename my toenail polish.
“I call that one Biker Slut,” he’d say, looking at the scab-red polish on my toes. And then he’d put the whole fat row of them in his mouth. It was heaven underfoot, around foot, about foot.
I loved that French Vogue shot of Jerry Hall giving toe to some anonymous stature, much like I adore this new shot from Italian Vogue of Eva Mendes giving toe to herself. There’s something unabashedly naughty about the sucking of the toe, something sweetly verboten, something just left of vanilla in the toe suck. It’s like Vincent Vega says of foot massages in Pulp Fiction. “That's what's so fuckin' cool about them,” says Vincent, “This sensual thing's goin' on that nobody's talkin about, but you know it and she knows it.”
The toe suck, as Vincent’s partner Jules observes about the foot massage, may not be the same as “stickin' your tongue in her holyiest of holyies,” but it feels pretty fucking close, pretty fucking close indeed. That is exactly what is so fucking cool about it. A toe suck is as close as you can get to oral sex while dressed. The intimacy, the tickle factor, the edging onto trammeling on kink, the smell, the unquestionable need to deny questions of hygiene for the sake of pleasure: the toe suck is the closest somatic approximation of tongue on holiest of holies.
The only thing possibly better is the open mouth on the naked arch of the foot, all wide warm maw, wet-hot pink and the barest scrape of the pearly whites. The ball of the foot against the bald pate. Or the press of the toes against a cheekbone. The cupping of chin in the arches of both of your feet. Or the two big toes together in a mouth, tongue swirling like a creemee around the both.
Summer is the time of feet. Enjoy them—your own and those of others.