Who writes…

August 9, 2017

Anon, who wrote so many poems without signing them, was often a woman.

Virginia Woolf
A Room of One’s Own

Prose is not to be read aloud but to oneself alone at night, and it is not quick as poetry but rather a gathering web of insinuations … Prose should be a long intimacy between strangers with no direct appeal to what both may have known. It should slowly appeal to feelings unexpressed, it should in the end draw tears out of the stone …

Henry Green
Pack My Bag

9th August

I keep a diary: a day-to-day record of my thoughts, activities, and impressions, handwritten in my spidery script that no one can read. I’ve done so most of my life. Here my most sordid secrets are laid bare. The Sapphic loves of my partners, the intense physical and emotional relationships I have experienced over time, and even the tempestuous passion I felt for Claire P all those years ago. All this and more is recorded in a series of black, hardcovered notebooks.

My secret life. Erotic, nebulous in parts, full of clichés with great lapses into flamboyancy and ecstasies transcended. Here is recorded my first lovemaking with SAM:

12th March

“Skin honey and scarlet, blouse the colour of pale wine. She wore a front fastening brassiere and her fine, pale breasts tumbled easily free – only to be trapped by my waiting palms.

“Fire & ecstasy.

“I turned a corner in space as we sought each other’s hidden soul. She came so very quickly, unexpectedly. Later she came again when I went down on her, licking her wet, puckered sex.

“Afterwards, I escorted her home. High, full moon and wind and light rain. Waited an eternity for a 138 Northwood bus at the stop beside the photographer’s studio.

Then, returning to my tatty flat, experienced intense loneliness and a sense of terrible loss. Masturbated aggressively in bed, the scent of her hair on the pillow beside my face. Felt myself outside of time. Tiptoeing through chaos, in another, alternative dimension. I tried to persuade myself that SAM’s love would endure, but knew it wouldn’t. My head full of fire and suspended stars. I couldn’t come until I thought of Georgina – her big eyes and nutbrown skin, my favorite fantasy girl, her curvaceous young body. I moaned her name aloud, over and over, as if casting a spell of protection against SAM’s encroachment on my life. Finally came imagining Georgina acting in a most lewd and provocative manner – which in reality she never would…!”

In time SAM became my wife – my first wife. I was deeply in love with her; or rather deeply in love with who I thought she might be. Hence this two years later:

5th December

“Blank days. So much dull work. Looking forward to a short break. Walking with SAM in Claraden Road. Snow falling and whiteness spreading around. Christmas lights in all the shop windows. Snowflakes on the collar of SAM’s grey overcoat melting. We kiss and her nose is ice cold on my cheek. She is so childlike at times, so in need of protection.

“I ask the question, straight out: ‘Will you marry me?’ By its suddenness, I surprised even myself. After all, what did I really have to offer her?

“The falling snow became millions & billions of falling diamonds in the streetlight’s glow. Pure white diamonds descending in silence –

“ ‘I haven’t a ring yet,’ sez me. ‘I thought we could go to Spivack’s in the morning and you can chose one you like.’

“Still she remained silent, contemplating my proposal, its ramifications and future complexities. Then, finally, she said: ‘Yes, I’ll marry you…’

“And the whole world came alive in me. White magic prevailed. SAM was happy too – and oh so very amorous. We hurried to my flat which was as cold as the North Pole in deep winter. We had each other on the living room floor, both still partly clothed – ”

Once SAM said to me that ‘There’s not more than thirty-six ways of doing it.’ Her own technique was one of virginal innocence. A child in a world of nasty lust and unspeakable desires. It was a technique that had its attractions, and a number of other admirers beside myself. Bruce, an American service man and Jazz musician, who lodged with SAM’s parents, practiced eight of those thirty-six ways of doing it, the night before our wedding. The child was a bitch on heat who believed her knickers were ankle warmers. But I was totally blind to this at the time. None so blind as those who will not see –

18th June

“Love, art, wine. Read the Kama Sutra. Fuck T’s wife in revenge for SAM’s many betrayals over our five years of marriage. Lust is all exposed nerve endings. It permeates every fiber of my being. As if every nerve in my body is pulled taut and stimulated by an almost continuous series of short-circuits.

“T’s wife, Pam, Pamela, a name invented by the poet, Philip Sidney – perhaps from the Greek, meaning “all honey”? Certainly, she is ALL honey. I pollinate her honey pot at every opportunity. And she is intoxicated by Pan, a thing of pandemonium, with a sex urge too violent for her body to sustain.

“Tranquility is no longer a possibility for either of us.

“Instead there is anguish, spasms of hate, terrible depression for me – which I cast temporarily aside in fleshy acts of revenge on Pam’s pale body. Clawing hands. Exhaustion. I have her in shop doorways at night. In alleyways by stinking dustbins. In her husband’s bed – even once in a toilet cubicle at Debenhams. Repeated humiliations. Only ever half-gratified, we both come back for more.

“But today SAM talks of a ‘Fresh start’. Forget the other men in her life, they’re not important. Temporary aberrations. In the past. It is me she really, truly loves…

“Words, words, and more words. Mostly lies, too. Heard it all, so many times before. Our love is fucked and there’s nothing I can do about it. What she “feels” is no longer “love”. It is nothing more than attachment, the habit of having someone familiar to touch, to hold, to control. A safe option. I did everything in my power to keep her close, everything in my power so that love would not disappear, not fade away between us. But I was living in an imaginary relationship. I was a fool…

“She tells me to give up Pam but I say, ‘Perhaps, we’ll see – ’

“We visit Al and Di this evening. We go in a black cab to Ealing. I finger a supposedly repentant SAM roughly during the journey’ She will do anything to gain my forgiveness. I make her “finish” herself off in front of me. She sits on one of the pull-down seats opposite, legs spread in compliance. After she comes, I make her kneel on the floor of the cab and suck me off.

“Eros crucified.

“The hate I let lose is equivalent to all the hate in the world. Behind the hate is love. Damaged, distorted, but not finished with…

“I can only think of all those evenings spent together in mutual silence, wrapped in love, the two of us in front of the fire. Her skin smelling faintly of buttermilk and baby powder. A unique small, this, like no other woman in the world. They were times we were both happy –

“Yet that too is probably a lie. Even during the best of times Sam was seeing other men. I know that now…”

So, in the pages of my diaries, I’m able to experience again the ugly haemorraging of love from my first marriage. I can witness afresh the sins, negligences, and ignorances of my earlier life, and gain fresh inspiration from them. I can see exactly how time distorts my memory of such long ago events, too. These diaries stand as witness to everything, warts and all.

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“It takes a woman years and years to unlearn the things she’s been taught to be sorry for.” Yes, but in unlearning these things, she may become a monster. Most men are uncomfortable with sexuality that is not made for their own consumption. And this new, superwoman will display many male traits – a propensity for violence, for example. And like most men, the ability to see things not as they are but as they think they should be –

You have been warned.

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The one thing that really, really turns me on. The most sexy thing in the world –

Kindness!

And one of the most exquisite experiences in the world –

‘Lying in bed on a summer morning, with the window open, listening to the church bells, eating buttered toast with cunty fingers.’

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Who the hell pays any attention to the world ending? It ends for me every single night. But it begins again next morning –