I exist in the cracks of forgotten time, the limbo of elongated limbs stretching as dawn breaks across the horizon. I watch your face while you sleep, wondering about the dreams dancing beneath your eyelids. Shifting slightly, I take stock of my body, feel the stretch and pull of my skin sliding across muscle, test the knots where muscle knits to bone, disrupt the stardust settled in my gut to feel the flurry of sparks in my stomach. I am Schrodinger’s lover, both here and not here, real and not real. The molecules of my skin dance in tandem from a distance, colliding at speeds too rapid and chaotic to form a concrete image. I am kinetic energy, movement and entropy, terrified of stagnation, finding calm in the chaos. Motion keeps me safe, but I am gone before I am ever truly here.
Vulnerability comes when no one can see, so when I crawl from your bed, I am graceful because you are not watching, and I kiss your face and tell you to keep sleeping. I creep forward into the shallow light of dawn, clutching a cigarette because oxygen is flammable and I need to remember how to burn. Alone, I bind sensation to language to anchor it down, and I will pick it up later in an explosion of cataclysmic heat that drops me to my knees without the benefit of your fingers in my hair, without an echoing eardrum to accept the words, “Please?” It’s a lonely way to be.
But I am not so easily forgotten; I am learning this slowly, in moments where I catch a glimpse of you watching me and I can taste the ache in the shallow breaths breaking through your lips. I thrive in the cracks where memories come like flashes. I have never known how to simply be, but the small moments when you look over at me and your eyes are of two minds, one of urgency and one of prolonging…there, the tension between the two is sustenance. The hardest endurance is always in my mind, soaked in the extravagant ache of anticipation.
I walked into your kitchen while you were cooking, trying to understand how the overlapping Venn diagrams of our lives would fit together in these shared moments. I wanted to be on, to be every bit as charming and charismatic as you have seen, but I can’t access that part of me here. Here, I am just a person, flawed and uncertain, simultaneously rambling while trying to reinforce the filter between my mind and my mouth. I am nervous, and my nervousness rides on the edge of my skin, pacing and stretching and moving so that I don’t have to sit still. I don’t ask people on dates. I don’t tell people that I want to fuck them. And now here I am, having done both of these things, standing in your kitchen and watching you move and wondering if you’re also wondering how we get from here to there. God, but desire is such an inconvenient emotion, especially when you’re cutting garlic and all I can do is watch your hands move and wonder how your fingertips would feel against my skin.
And so I laugh when you ask me how I feel about digesting horizontally, because I’m not sure how we would have made it to your bed without that. And when your fingers finally touch my skin, sliding between the gaps of my clothes, I bury my face in your chest and bite my lip because your fingers are tracing lines and circles that vibrate through my core, shaking my breath and reverberating in my throat.
I want you inside me, in a way that I cannot name, in a way that words and language cannot capture, an epiphany of desire that leaves me laughing because I cannot explain why I need so badly. Your fingertips mold that which does not yield, and each time they raked across the broken lines of a new tattoo, you stopped, eyes wide, and apologized, but I sunk into the pain and a part of me wanted more, wanted your methodical, calculating movements asking me to take just a little more, to hurt, to hold the hurt in my skin and trust you with it.
I am not a masochist, vehemently. Except that I am, sometimes, in some ways, when I am floating away because my body doesn’t know how to put itself together, and pain is the only anchor I can find. And I rarely say this because it’s not a universal truth, but you could hurt me more than you do and I would drink it in more than I would want to admit.
God, but I ache. The sharpness of your teeth on my back and your hands, wild and roving, brushing against my throat like you wanted to clench, but didn’t and I do not have the words to tell you that you can. And laughter, with your cock down my throat and your face between my legs, gasping the words, not to be too forward, but wanna fuck?
God, yes. (Also, aren’t we already?)
I can hide behind the words I write, crafted carefully with plausible deniability, but the truth is, you have lived in my mind, in this moment, your hands on my hips, pressing into me, more times that I care to admit. And the reality of your skin against mine exponentially surpasses any fantasy my mind can conjure and I am full, full of feeling and desire pressing into me and clenching around you, full of fire that your hands have stoked for hours, full and satiated, in this moment, where your fingers are leaving bruises on my thighs that I will find tomorrow and smile.
And when you ask to fuck me again as I am getting off, I think, well, this is a first, and say yes and I worry about the ways that I cum and have a habit of forcibly expelling people or giving them nosebleeds but you are behind me again, and I feel raw and open and words, coherent or not, are starting to tumble from my lips, and I am clenching against you to hold you in because in this moment, I am the sun, dripping liquid heat and this, this is what I want you to see, to watch, to feel, and I can sense the difference in your rhythm, the urgency in your hips pressing into me, and I am here, fully here, for this moment, finally calm in the tempest, resting in the eye of an unnamable storm.
This is my resistance today. This is my fuck you, this moment where I can claim my desire and hold the space between our bodies, this moment where fear does not intrude and I am simply here, sprawled out on your bed with muscles contracting, languid and laying in the sunlight streaming in from a window that doesn’t fully close.
And in an hour, when we are waiting for a table at the diner and your fingers find mine, hooked together and pressed against the window glass and, later, when you rest your hands against my hips and your chin on my shoulder, I am floored because you are choosing this when you don’t have to. Perhaps it is this, more than anything, which eases me to trust that I am here because you want me to be, and not out of some sense of experimentation. This is not a fear isolated to you, but to anyone who wants to hold my skin in their hands, anyone who looks at me with the edge of desire; I cannot help but wonder if I am a person or a conquest. But you look at me unashamed; you show affection when you don’t have to, and it confuses and delights me simultaneously.
And so, I can smile softly to myself and eagerly await next time, walking the razor-thin edge between hope and expectation. Because next time- if, in the space between hope and expectation, there can be a next time- I can remember your fingertips leaving the shadows of bruises and caressing my skin with tantalizing softness. I can remember your fingers spanning across the inches to curl around mine in the frenzy of a Sunday morning diner. And next time, perhaps, my words will find their way through the fraying filter and curl across my tongue to ask, hesitant and aching, “Please?”