"Sex without Love" by Sharon Olds, expresses her emotions against loveless sex as a hurtful and cold act. Through her use of various poetic techniques she was able to display clear images to the reader. In the poem "Sex Without Love ", Sharon Olds uses the simile "Beautiful as dancers, gliding over each other like ice skates over the ice " to paint a picture in the readers head of what the act of intercourse can be compared to. Ice skating is a very majestic, soothing and smooth act. As a result of the comparison we can picture two bodies majestically and smoothly rubbing against each other. Also the ice can show how sex can be cold as well as impersonal. .
Another simile occurs in lines 5-8 which states "Faces red as steak, wine, wet as the children at birth who's mothers are going to give them away ". I believe that the red in the steak is a symbol of immaturity relating to the people having sex without love. When meat is red it's undercooked, undeveloped and overall not ready. So when their face is red I picture an immature person, most likely a young adult having sex just for the hell of it with no love present. The second part of the simile, "Wet as the children at birth whose mothers are going to give them away " in my opinion symbolizes abandonment. Sex with love leads to babys that are wanted. On the other hand sex without love can lead to unwanted babies that get given away.
The simile in lines 18-24 discuss how having sex without love can be a one man show like a runner for example. When having sex without love you're not doing it to please the other person you're doing it to yourself. The ice skater and the runner are similar because they both act alone when they perform. The road surface is to the runner as the ice is to the skater. In the end the road surface and ice are just being used. They are being used to please the skater and runner. This relates to the poem because its supports the fact that when you have sex without love your just using the other person for your own good.