It was the great Greek poet Aeneas (or was it Donna Summers?) who said “Beauty is everywhere”. I’m always pursuing the sublime in the commonplace. Poetry is everywhere if you look for it. Search hard enough and the lyrical can be found almost anywhere.

I belong to the Eric Manchester Internet Fan Site, which is a web based fan site/list serve dedicated to 80’s porn star Eric Manchester. The site allows members to post anything and everything about their shared fixation: Eric Manchester. Manchester was a modest gay adult film star in the golden age of Falcon video pac 62. He never reached the dizzying heights of say a Jeff Stryker or Steve Hammond, but neither was he a third tier star like Nick Cougar. His performances had an unpretentious and low key charm. He was simultaneously rough trade and boyish, a little dangerous but never “I’m gonna cut you” scary. He basically played the young tough mechanic type who happened to have a beautifully tender face. A hard candy with a soft sexy boyish center. He never over acted, nor was he overtly demonstrative in his scenes. He was a grunter not a screamer.

The internet fan site contains tons of Eric Manchester minutia.

The last known sighting of Eric was apparently talking to a parking meter (maybe high on drugs?) in San Francisco earlier this year.

He started his porn career at age 18.

The tattoo on his upper left arm is the Rolling Stones’ logo.

Though never a huge star, Mr.Manchester has built up a cult following over the years. His fan site has over 1,400 members. Maybe people find Eric’s low watt performances and playfully delinquent persona arousing like I do, or maybe we all are obsessive perverts and every 80’s porn star has an active news group/website floating out there in cyberspace.

On this particular website there are hundreds of odes to Eric. Like some gorgeous fallen Roman solider he is extolled over and over again in a manner that makes Walt Whitman’s “ode to young men bathing” seem like a ride on the kiddy merry go round.

Here is a brief snapshot of the more fervent and expressive posting on the fan site, which I give to you dear readers, in an effort to demonstrate that the muse can be discovered in the most unlikely places, even in the skuzzy 80’s videos you have been masturbating to for the last ten years:

“Can you hear the sound of his sexy voice? Can you hear the sound of his sexy voice? And the sound of his balls slapping the hole? “-David (Editor’s note: Congrats David you evoked Eric with a beguiling simplicity)

“Eric, Eric, just the mere thought of him causes stomachs to flutter and dicks to engorge”- Ericnews (Editor’s note: The stomach fluttering is a little cliché, but “dicks to engorge” is a nice touch)

“The perfection, the beauty of a great man!”-David (Editor’s note: Incredibly succinct. This David character is good!)

“Eric is sleeping in my kitchen”- Frankcoko (Editor’s note: Surreal, abrupt and slightly eerie. I like it!)

“America can still be the land of hope in spite of the Republican party and the Religious Right. Thanks for the greetings”.-Stephen (Editor’s note: Stephen while political inspired uplift has its place; and you clearly know how to infuse your personal passion into your writing this is actually a cautionary tale on what not to do. Stay on task, this poem is about Eric Manchester remember?)

“I remember seeing this video a long, long time ago. The lighting was awful (at least in the VHS copy I had), and you could not see Eric a lot. Anyway, I think I do have this flick in digital format. As soon as I find it, I will upload the scene of Eric for you”.-Antonio (Editor’s note: Antonio this piece is a terrific demonstration of grafting the ideas of memory, remorse and action. Well done!)

“Some of your posts have been about him being in Las Vegas. All I have to say about that is “DAMNIT!”

I seem to be two steps behind him.

I just moved back to Seattle from Las Vegas.

If he has gone the way of most people in Vegas, I’m really sorry to hear that. Although I don’t know what he looks like now, but I would LOVE to see him.

When people ask me which celebrity I would love to sleep with, I ALWAYS say, “Eric Manchester”.-Richard (Editor’s note: Richard I get where you are going with this poem. I love the use of all caps for the defiant DAMINT. You are seemingly trying to reflect an obsessive love that is always falling out of reach. But sometimes ambiguity brings out depth in a piece. I like the idea but the execution is a little shaky.)

“My favorite Manchester scenes are in Mannequin Man – where he keeps saying he’s “fixing to tear up your ass” to the guy in the back room. …..and then he does.” –James (Editor’s note: Awww James you carry with in you the heart of a true romantic. Bravo my good man!)

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