Hole in One: The Pleasures of Oral Sex in Susan Ioannou’s “Golf Lesson”
by Todd Landree

One has to peer deeper into the meanings of the subtle hints that are accosted throughout Susan Ioannou’s “Golf Lesson” to see the complete and utter sexual innuendoes that litter themselves throughout each unique stanza.  Susan Ioannou may have written this elegant piece, but the Speaker is a sexually starved Pro Golfer who gets better acquainted with some lucky girl who is about to pleasure the Pro Golfer in ways he can only fantasize about.  The female in this poem gives the man pleasure with oral sex on the golf course, releasing him in more ways than one.  The pro is talking about receiving oral sex from this tantalizing woman because he is on the cusp of carnal pleasure, and then recounts the love affair to his buddies afterwards.
When examining the title of this poem, the question of how a “golf lesson” can relate to fellatio may arise.  However, after closely examining the poem, several possibilities arise.  Golf in some circles stands for Gentleman Only, Ladies Forbidden.  The author may be trying to cement this logic by saying that ladies are only allowed to be on the golf course to satisfy her man, and not to play the ancient sport, with him giving her a lesson by having the girl perform irrumatio on him.  Another possibility is that the student fell for the power that the main character wielded with his club, with her falling on her knees ready to satisfy him with her tongue.  Both options are possible as the reader looks further into the poem itself, rather than just the title.
The reader has to look at the various symbols scattered throughout “Golf Lesson” to appreciate the oral intercourse that is taking place.  “The pro’s firm hands/lay a driver across her palm” (lines 1-2). The driver symbolizes the man’s penis.  Looking deeper at the connections of driver, one needs to break the words up and sound it out, “drive-her”. If the reader looks at the annunciation of “drive-her” it can be classified as the penis which drives the girl in lust and passion for his manhood.  Then, “head down…” (5). The Pro directed the girls head down onto the head of his penis, letting her start the lesson of pleasure.
The next stanza begins to clarify repetition, “again now,/again…” (8-9).  The repetition is symbolic of the young nubile girl’s head bobbing up and down against the man’s driver, pleasuring him in unique ways only possible through oral sex.  The reader gets a clear picture of the man receiving fellatio and enjoying it.  Finally, the girl needs to, “Breathe!” (14), after sucking on his penis for an extended amount of time.  This stanza is significant because the word breathe is all by itself, signaling the near end of the act of irrumatio, and the man is about to release his carnal load.
The onomatopoeia of, “PLOCK” (16) can be taken in multiple ways, but with climax coming out of the man’s driver, it is the sound of his shimmering penis coming out of her moist lips.  The man reaches climax as, “a white dot climbs” (17). The white dot is not a golf ball, but rather the man’s semen escaping in pure ecstasy out of his body making a, “long graceful parabola” (18), to the ground.  The Pro was, “freed by the swing’s force” (20).  After releasing himself, the main character says a common phrase that explains the presence of a term that throws most readers away from the notion of oral sex, daughter.  Quite simply, daughter is just a reference to the man asking her, “Who’s your daddy?”  While that phrase is not common in most academic phrases it is Occam’s Razor, the simplest explanation.
The speaker uses symbols from golf to help the reader see the poem on multiple planes, but more specifically with the pleasures of oral intercourse.  He not only gets taught a lesson in pleasure, the Pro links with his audience on the subconscious primal urge of sex.  He wants people to understand that the girl was not receiving a real golf lesson, but she was giving the man pleasure with oral sex on the golf course, releasing his tension in more ways than one.  The main character gets a hole in one, taking him, “closer/to the cup” (27-29), of pleasure.