You pulsate through even the question of what to have for dinner.
You are trapped deep in my nerve, you have spread under the surface of my skin like a bruise. You are the slick sliding down my neural pathways. The snap and lock and spark that causes the lights to blow when I flick a switch. You are the click of my land mines before they explode. The flavour I taste when my mouth is empty. You are the moment before I come, all taut and jangled nerve, more acute and curious than the consummation. You are my own teeth on lip, the ache of my breast. You are the inexplicable detachment of mind to body, so that my head is there when I am here. You are the memory of muscle, the quickening of my blood. You are the juice that flows through me and makes me wet when I have not even noticed the weather.
You who loses no sleep over me, who turns to another and makes your bed every morning (and the nights I cannot bear to think of).
You, who cannot know how far and completely I have fallen.
It took you three full days. Then the little red flag and your name.
‘Did you get home alright the other night?’
‘I was thinking. I should have walked you home …’
‘Oh ha, that’s okay. I can take care of myself’
‘I’ve no doubt. Still, I probably should have. It’s just …’
‘It might have been more dangerous with me there’
A full hour and then:
‘I might not have stopped at your door’
This is is how it begins. A little dance of words, each sentence extending an invitation to the next. One offering accepted and then another until your fingers are tripping over the keys in your eagerness to propel this thing forward. My response was immediate. I had waited three full days.
‘I like living dangerously’
And that was it. The beginning of us. Seduction can be so banal.
I am not supposed to like this woman. I am not supposed to admire her selfishness or her hunger, a greed that has taken to demolishing all that gets in her way. I should hate the destruction she causes, not least of all to herself. I have been taught to admire women, find my muses and inspiration in acts of strength and independence. Women who fight and march and challenge, not women who fuck and covet and become the object of their own desire.
I am not supposed to like this woman. Not her scheming or her blind faith. The cleavage bearing dresses, the teeth ready to catch his flesh, the way she parades before him. The way she ensures she is every single thing the other is not.
But here is the truth of it. I have fallen in love with this woman. The way she has emerged from within me, this path she has taken me down is an intoxication, a slow tumbling in to wonderland. My body is awake – god how long was I sleeping? She stares me down from the mirror and I know that I will do anything to make her stay.
I am not supposed to like this woman at all.
The dream is always the same. It is always about reach, about skin and breath and compacted air, how any distance between you pulses with the memory of touch. There is a softness to the desire, and a recognition, because in dreams it is about return, about visiting the caves of your sub-conscious and finding the little pieces of history you’ve hidden there. You get to spend hours in these dark rooms together, turning over your memories, sinking in to the want they hold. There is such ache to the bone and longing in the muscle here – in the reach, on the skin – the hunger saturates you until you are soaking wet, and you can lick the sadness from your fingers as you part. It tastes of all that is lost in waking hours and it lingers like an echo through the rest of your day. The dream is always the same.
It tastes of all that is lost in waking hours ...
I caught it, fleeting as it was. A rare moment where you know exactly what is happening to you, and how. It was only this on that first night but I felt your hand on my wrist all the way home and I sat up and stared at the wall until the moon disappeared. It seemed funny at the time, just short of ridiculous. I was cultivating a broken heart and it wasn’t supposed to rearrange itself so quickly. It felt – distasteful – how easily I fell. Did you think about me that night too? Were you telling yourself a story about how you had touched a woman’s wrist and felt the pulse of her under your index finger? How it had been a moment and nothing more, the kind you no longer considered yours to take?
I have always believed that in every beginning, an ending is written. The idea that right from the first moment the story expands to include all that will come from the encounter, and then simply waits for you to catch up. It is a desire to believe in the fates, in muses, in gods throwing the dice – the romantic notions of an atheist who never fails to be moved by the idea that we are strutting and fretting our hour upon the stage, but wants it to signify something.
This blog then is about an ending, about catching up to oneself finally. It is also very much about a fated encounter, about working backwards from its conclusion to reveal the story of two people who in their beginnings did not consider how their ending would be written.
It is a work of fiction … and yet …