Don’t let anyone tell you that the turn of the century is prudish. In November 1909, Nora Barnacle initiated writing letters back and forth with her partner and future husband, famed Irish writer James Joyce, while he was in Dublin and she was raising their children in Trieste. Although her side of the correspondence has been lost, the letters Joyce sent were published in the 1975 book Selected Letters of James Joyce. That text has since gone out of print, though the letters have been published online and preserved.

There’s a question of decorum when examining the artifacts of the dead: What secrets or intimate details of one’s life should remain private? However, in the case of a brilliant literary mind like James Joyce, sharing his words seems like a public service, especially with Valentine’s Day coming up. Feel free to use any of the excerpts in your card—and here’s hoping your significant other likes poetry.

As a warning: these letters are dirty. These passages are not for the faint of heart or the underage. Do not expect the subtle and opaque wordplay Joyce used in his most famous work, Ulysses. In his letters to Nora, Joyce gets straight to the point, and that point is taboo, intimate sex with a fixation on certain bodily fluids. If you fear you may be offended by such language, now's your chance to go elsewhere.

1. “LIKE A HOG RIDING A SOW...”

“My love for you allows me to pray to the spirit of eternal beauty and tenderness mirrored in your eyes or to fling you down under me on that soft belly of yours and f*ck you up behind, like a hog riding a sow, glorying in the open shame of your upturned dress and white girlish drawers and in the confusion of your flushed cheeks and tangled hair.”

December 2, 1909

2. “THE LOVE OF MY EYES FOR YOUR STRANGE LURING EYES..."

“The last drop of seed has hardly been squirted up your c*nt before it is over and my true love for you, the love of my verses, the love of my eyes for your strange luring eyes, comes blowing over my soul like a wind of spices.”

December 2, 1909

3. “MY LITTLE FRIGGING MISTRESS!”

“Nora, my faithful darling, my sweet-eyed blackguard schoolgirl, be my whore, my mistress, as much as you like (my little frigging mistress! my little f*cking whore!) you are always my beautiful wild flower of the hedges, my dark-blue rain-drenched flower.”

December 2, 1909

4. “PERHAPS THE HORN I HAD WAS NOT BIG ENOUGH...”

“Perhaps the horn I had was not big enough for you for I remember that you bent down to my face and murmured tenderly ‘F*ck up, love! f*ck up, love!’”

December 3, 1909

5. “BUY A PRETTY FRILLY PAIR OF DRAWERS...”

“I send you a little banknote and hope you may be able to buy a pretty frilly pair of drawers at least for yourself out of it and will send you more when I am paid again.”

December 6, 1909

6. “A SUDDEN IMMODEST NOISE MADE BY YOU BEHIND”

“The smallest things give me a great cockstand—a whorish movement of your mouth, a little brown stain on the seat of your white drawers, a sudden dirty word spluttered out by your wet lips, a sudden immodest noise made by you behind and then a bad smell slowly curling up out of your backside.”

December 6, 1909

7. “HOT LECHEROUS LIPS...”

“At such moments I feel mad to do it in some filthy way, to feel your hot lecherous lips sucking away at me, to f*ck between your two rosy-tipped bubbies, to come on your face and squirt it over your hot cheeks and eyes, to stick it up between the cheeks of your rump and bugger you.”

December 6, 1909

8. “FAT DIRTY FARTS...”

“At every f*ck I gave you your shameless tongue come bursting out through your lips and if I gave you a bigger stronger f*ck than usual fat dirty farts came spluttering out of your backside.”

December 8, 1909

9. “ARSE FULL OF FARTS...”

“You had an arse full of farts that night, darling, and I f*cked them out of you, big fat fellows, long windy ones, quick little merry cracks and a lot of tiny little naughty farties ending in a long gush from your hole.”

December 8, 1909

10. “NO END OF HER FARTS IN MY FACE...”

“I hope Nora will let off no end of her farts in my face so that I may know their smell also.”

December 8, 1909

11. “LICK LAZILY ROUND...”

“Sometime too I shall surprise you asleep, lift up your skirts and open your hot drawers gently, then lie down gently by you and begin to lick lazily round your bush. You will begin to stir uneasily then I will lick the lips of my darling’s c*nt. You will begin to groan and grunt and sigh and fart with lust in your sleep. Then I will lick up faster and faster like a ravenous dog until your c*nt is a mass of slime and your body wriggling wildly.”

December 8, 1909

12. “BIG FAT DIRTY SNAKING THING...”

“F*ck me if you can squatting in the closet, with your clothes up, grunting like a young sow doing her dung, and a big fat dirty snaking thing coming slowly out of your backside.”

December 16, 1909

13. “DARLING...

"Darling, do not be offended at what I wrote.”

December 2, 1909

To read the letters in full, check out arlindo-correia.com and adoxoblog.